February 05, 2019:
Gautam Khaitan, managing partner of OP Khaitan & Co, is back in jail, after a Special Court re-extended his Enforcement Directory (ED) custody over the weekend by another 6 days, to a total of 11 days now.
The extension came out following the fresh black money allegations made by the ED that are apparently not related to the dodgy ₹ 3,600 crore AgustaWestland chopper deal.
The Delhi Court ordered medical tests for Khaitan, who had complained for sleeping troubles in his cell, but agreed to extend Khaitan’s detention, which had commenced again the previous week, after the ED claimed that it had “material evidence and reasons to believe” that Khaitan was guilty of money laundering under Sec 51 of the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act 2015.
Apparently, the ED has knowledge of Khaitan holding unidentified assets worth more than ₹ 500 crore ($70m).
It alleged, according to the New Indian Express: “The accused is in possession of the proceeds of crime generated as a result of the willful attempt to evade tax. The accused has intentionally and deliberately been involved in projecting the proceeds of crime as untainted.”
“He knows all the persons related to arms deals other than AgustaWestland and other deals. There are many more information where people who handle other deals were in his contact. All the documents shown in AgustaWestland are being put before me again in this case,” ED prosecutors added.
The previous week, after an Income Tax Department raid and Khaitan’s arrest on 25 Jan, the ED had told the Court that new charges were unrelated to the chopper deal, but were solely about his holding of illegal foreign accounts and black money and so-called “stash assets”, the ET had reported.
Khaitan’s lawyer PK Dubey, apparently responded that the ED’s evidence was forged and that it was basically making the AgustaWestland case again, suggesting it was an attempt to pressure Khaitan to flip on other high-profile accused in the case.