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Deported middlemen to face custodial interrogation by ED


Press Trust of India New Delhi
The two long wanted middlemen, Rajeev Saxena and Deepak Talwar, will be subjected to custodial interrogation by the Enforcement Directorate in connection with the sensitive VVIP chopper scam and a case of corruption related to the civil aviation sector.
Saxena and Talwar, after being deported from Dubai on Thursday, were handed over to the ED, which produced them before two different judges in the Patiala House Courts complex and secured their custody to quiz them for their alleged roles in AgustaWestland chopper scam and a scandal that caused loss to the national carrier Air India.
Saxena was the first to be produced before Special Judge Arvind Kumar who remanded him for the custodial interrogation for four days.
An hour later, Talwar, a corporate lobbyist was produced before another Special Judge Santosh Snehi Mann, who also agreed to the plea of the probe agency that he has to be quizzed for larger conspiracy and allowed his custodial interrogation for seven days.
While seeking the custody of Saxena, the ED alleged that he along with other accused, Gautam Khaitan, provided global corporate structure to launder money.
Saxena's wife Shivani was earlier arrested by the ED and is currently on bail.
Khaitan is arrested in another case by the ED, which wants to confront him with Saxenas.
Khaitan, who is on bail in the ED and CBI case in connection with the chopper scam, was on January 26 arrested by the ED in a fresh case of black money and money laundering.
Corporate lobbyist Talwar allegedly acted as a middleman in negotiations which favoured private airlines and caused loss to the national carrier Air India.
ED told the court that by interrogating Talwar, it had to find out the names of officials of Ministry of Civil Aviation, National Aviation Company of India Ltd and Air India, who favoured foreign airlines, including Qatar Airways, Emirates and Air Arabia, by making national carrier, gave up profit making routes and profit making timings.
Saxena, a director of two Dubai-based firms UHY Saxena and Matrix Holdings was residing in Palm Jumeriah, Dubai and has been living in the UAE for last 26 years.
The probe agency sought 8-day custody of Saxena but the judge provided only four days to interrogate him in connection with the VVIP chopper scam.
An alleged middleman in the deal, Christain James Michel who is a British national, was also brought from Dubai last month and is in Tihar jail.

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First Published: Jan 31 2019 | 9:10 PM IST

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