Published On: Sat, Dec 22nd, 2018
Spotlight | ByIANS

Augusta middleman Christian Michel in ED custody now

New Delhi: A Delhi court on Saturday allowed the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to quiz British national Christian Michel, the middleman accused in the Rs 3,600-crore AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal case, for seven days.

Michel was extradited to India on December 4 from the United Arab Emirates

Special Judge Arvind Kumar sent Michel to ED’s custody for seven days after the probe agency arrested him in the case.

ED’s counsel and special public prosecutor DP Singh told the court that Michel’s custody is required to confront the accused with some witnesses.

ED also told the court it has to probe the money laundering aspect as the money has not come through official channels but through hawala transactions.

Michel’s counsel Aljo K Joseph and Vishnu Sankar opposed the plea.

Michel was extradited to India on December 4 from the United Arab Emirates. He is one of the three middlemen being investigated by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the ED in the VVIP chopper deal.

In January, the ED had lodged a request with the UAE authorities seeking extradition of Michel. Both the ED and the CBI had filed charge-sheets in bribery cases in Indian courts and non-bailable warrants had been issued against the accused.

In its charge-sheet, the CBI had named former Indian Air Force chief S.P. Tyagi, his cousin Sanjeev Tyagi alias Julie, then IAF Vice Chief J.S. Gujral and advocate Gautam Khaitan as the four Indians involved in the scam.

Others named in the charge-sheet included Giuseppe Orsi, the former chief of Italian defence and aerospace major Finmeccanica, and Bruno Spagnolini, former CEO of AgustaWestland, apart from middlemen Michel, Haschke and Gerosa.

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