Mehul Choksi’s first photo from Dominica under police custody
The first image of the Fugitive diamantaire Mehul Choksi has gone viral on the internet where he can be seen in the custody of the police in Dominica.
The pictures, supplied by the AntiguaNewsRoom, showing him sustaining several injuries on his hands and the left eye that appeared bruised and swollen.
Posting the picture, the AntiguaNewsRoom tweeted, “First pictures emerge of Mehul Choksi behind bars.”
Choksi was arrested by Dominica, a country in Caribbean island, on May 25. Before that, he was staying in Antigua island. Choksi and his nephew Nirav Modi are among the key accused in the 2018-Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam for allegedly siphoning off ₹13,500 crore of public money using letters of undertaking.
The PNB bank alleged that a few rogue employees had issued fake bank guarantees over several years to help jewellery groups – controlled by Modi and Choksi – raise funds in foreign credit.
Modi and Choksi left India before the fraud came to light but have denied any wrongdoing. Modi was arrested in London in 2019 and is fighting extradition to India. Choksi has been living in Antigua and Barbuda.
Post the arrest in Dominica. Lawyers of Choksi filed a habeas corpus petition in Dominica and have also highlighted his deprivation of access to legal assistance there.
Habeas Corpus is a writ requiring a person under arrest to be brought before a judge or into court, especially to secure the person’s release unless lawful grounds are shown for their detention.
As a result, the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC) on Friday allowed Choksi to meet his legal counsel and be transported to a hospital for medical attention and for the administration of a Covid-19 test.
Moreover, the ECSC court also put a stay on his repatriation from Dominica.
The next hearing in the matter is scheduled to take place on June 2.