A city magistrate's court today dismissed a petition filed by sidelined AIADMK leader T T V Dhinakaran seeking permission to cross examine 17 prosecution witnesses in connection with a FERA case against him. The Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (Economic Offence-II) S Malarmathy rejected the plea stating that prima facie no case has been made out. Dhinakaran wanted the court to allow him to cross examine 17 witnesses, including an Indian embassy official then posted to London, and some former ED officials. When the petition came up for consideration, counsel for the Enforcement Directorate opposed it, contending that the accused has moved such a plea only to delay the trial. The ED registered the case against Dhinakaran in 1996 charging him with acquiring USD 1.04 crore in foreign exchange without obtaining prior permission from the Reserve Bank of India in violation of Foreign Exchange Regulation Act (FERA). According to the ED, he allegedly deposited the amount in the current account of Dipper Investments Limited, a company incorporated in the British Virgin Islands, and having account with Barclays Bank, Sutton, UK.
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