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Rediff.com  » Business » Mallya fails to appear before court; ED to initiate action

Mallya fails to appear before court; ED to initiate action

July 29, 2016 19:07 IST

The agency will now proceed to attach Mallya's assets even as the court is expected to declare him a proclaimed offender after he skipped the court's summons.

The Enforcement Directorate is expected to initiate a fresh action of attachment of assets against liquor baron Vijay Mallya who on Friday skipped appearance before a PMLA court in Mumbai in connection with a money laundering probe against him in an alleged bank loan fraud case.

The court, last month, had issued a proclamation order against Mallya asking him to appear before it at 11 am today after saying he has "absconded" and was "concealing" himself to avoid arrest.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had also published in leading dailies the court-issued proclamation against Mallya for appearance before the special PMLA court.

Official sources said the agency will now proceed under relevant sections of the CrPC and further attach Mallya's assets even as the court is expected to declare him a proclaimed offender after he skipped the court's summons.

The proclamation order issued against him last month had said:  "Whereas complaint has been made before me that above named accused Vijay Vithal Mallya residing at address: c/o Kingfisher Airlines Ltd, Mumbai 400018, has committed the offence of punishable under Section 4 of PMLA, 2002 and it has been returned to a warrant of arrest thereupon issued that the said Vijay Vithal Mallya cannot be found and whereas it has been shown to my satisfaction that the said Vijay Vithal Mallya has absconded and is concealing himself to avoid the service of the said warrant.

"Proclamation is hereby made that the above named accused in the above case required to appear in the Special Court under PMLA, Greater Bombay in court Room No 16 to answer the said complaint on July 29, 2016 at 11:00 AM," the order issued under the signature of Spl Judge P R Bhavake  had read.

                                                            Vijay Mallya saga: Complete Coverage 

The proclamation was issued by a special anti-money laundering court here on June 14 under Section 82 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) at the request of ED which is probing his role in the Rs 900 crore IDBI-Kingfisher Airlines loan case.

ED had sought the proclamation notice to be issued against Mallya as it said he had "multiple" arrest warrants pending against him, including a non-bailable warrant (NBW) under the PMLA, and that the agency wants him to join the probe "in person".

A person can be termed a proclaimed offender in a criminal case probe if the court has reasons to believe that the accused against whom a warrant of arrest has been issued by it, has absconded or is concealing himself so that such warrant cannot be executed.

ED has already attached his properties worth about Rs 1,411 crore (Rs 14.11 billion) under PMLA in this case.

As per Section 82 of the CrPC, the court can publish a written proclamation requiring such an accused to appear at a specified place and time from the date of publication of such a proclamation.

The agency has been wanting Mallya to join investigations "in person" in its PMLA probe against him and others in the Rs 900 crore alleged loan fraud of IDBI bank and has virtually exhausted all legal remedies like seeking an Interpol arrest warrant and getting his passport revoked.

The embattled liquor baron is alleged to have diverted a part of the loan to some of his offshore businesses.

It is also seeking to invoke the India-United Kingdom Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) to have Mallya extradited from Britain.

He had left India on March 2 using his diplomatic passport.

The agency has registered a money laundering case against Mallya and others based on an FIR registered last year by the CBI. 

Photographs: J. Adam Huggins/Getty Images

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