A special court here today sentenced 23 persons to five years in jail each for duping investors of of Rs 3.6 crore. The prosecution case was that three private financiers - Mettur Cauvery Finance, Sree Cauveri Finance and Annai Cauvery Finance - had defrauded a large number of investors, without paying the interest and returning the amount collected from them to the tune of Rs 3.6 crore between 2005 and 2008. After investors approached the court, charge sheets were filed against 24 partners of these companies and the case was heard by Special Court set up under the Tamil Nadu Protection of Interest of Depositors (in Financial Establishments) (TANPID). Special Judge K Babu sentenced 23 convicts to five-year jail term each and also imposed fines on them.
One accused had died during the trial. The judge directed the companies to pay Rs 1.4 crore to the depositors and Rs 31.60 lakh to the government as penalty. Promising 15 per cent interest for the deposits per month, the Mettur-based companies had collected the amount. The companies stopped paying the interest after a few months, following which investors approached the court.