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British High Commission seeks consular access to Christian Michel

The Rs 36 billion AgustaWestland VIP helicopter deal, finalised during the previous government of Manmohan Singh, had got mired in allegations of kickbacks

ANI  |  New Delhi [India] 

Michel  Christian
Agusta Westland scam accused middleman Michel Christian at CBI headquarters in New Delhi | Photo: PTI

The has asked the for consular access to Christian Michel, sources said on Thursday. Michel is a British citizen and the alleged middleman in the Rs 36 billion deal.

The has not responded to the British High Commission's latest request, the sources added.

Michel was extradited to from UAE on Tuesday night and a court here on Wednesday remanded him to five-day (CBI) custody.

During the hearing, DP Singh appeared for the and asked for a 14-day custody of Michel for a thorough probe. Michel's had opposed it and had also moved a bail plea for Michel.

The court kept the bail plea pending for next hearing and allowed Michel's one hour each in the morning and evening for consultancy.

According to sources, Michel complained of anxiety during questioning by and subsequently, he was given medicine.

On Tuesday, the CBI had issued a statement saying: "Wanted fugitive criminal James who has been avoiding criminal proceedings in in Case is being extradited by UAE Authorities to Under the guidance of Ajit Doval, Security Advisor (NSA), the entire operation is being coordinated by Incharge Director/CBI M. Nageswara Rao. A team lead by A. Sai Manohar, Joint Director/CBI has been to for the purpose."

The Rs 36 billion VIP helicopter deal, finalised during the previous government of Manmohan Singh, had got mired in allegations of kickbacks.

According to the charge sheet filed in a court two years back, Michel had received kickbacks to the tune of 30 million Euros from AgustaWestland for the deal involving a purchase of 12 VIP helicopters. The deal, signed in 2007, was scrapped in 2013 following the bribery allegations.

CBI had filed charge sheet in a trial court on September 1, 2017 against Christian and 11 other accused persons. The trial court took cognizance of the offences on October 11, 2017. CBI's request for extradition was forwarded to the UAE authorities on March 19, last year through diplomatic channels.

Extradition proceedings were held before on the extradition request of CBI. Vide order dated November 19, 2018, the upheld the lower court decision for possibility of extraditing Christian to Indian authorities. Accordingly, Christian was extradited to face legal proceedings.

First Published: Thu, December 06 2018. 11:20 IST
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