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Lawyer Gautam Khaitan sent to judicial custody, moves bail plea before court

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

A on Friday sought response from on a application of who was sent to judicial custody in a fresh case of alleged possession and laundering of black money.

Khaitan, who is also an accused in VVIP chopper scam, was produced before on expiry of his custodial interrogation in the money laundering case and the ED requested the court to send him to judicial custody (JC).

The ED said that if left free, Khaitan may flee from justice and hamper the probe after which the court sent him to JC till February 20.

After the court passed the order, Khaitan's P moved an application seeking for his client on the grounds that he was not required for probe any further.

told the court that Khaitan was practising as a for more than 25 years and that he had deep roots in society.

The court, thereafter, directed the ED's public prosecutors D P Singh and N Matta to file a response to the application by February 15.

Khaitan had earlier claimed before the court that ED was forcing him to falsely implicate someone influential in "any defence deal" which happened during the UPA regime.

Khaitan's had said: "They asked me (Khaitan) to give any name involved in any defence deal (of UPA period). They asked to give any name, that they needed it within these two months. They are constantly forcing me to give name and I will be absolved.

"When Michel (middleman recently extradited from Dubai) came, you (ED) said he had taken my name and I was required to be confronted. But nothing came out of that case. Now you have come up with this case."

The agency, through Samvedna Verma, had earlier told the court, "Khaitan knows all the persons related to arms deals other than and other deals. There are many more information where people who handle other deals were in his contact."

The ED has maintained that the present case had nothing to do with the alleged scam and that the accused was operating and holding a number of foreign accounts illegally and thereby possessing black money and stashing assets.

The present case under the PMLA was filed by the ED against Khaitan on the basis of a case filed by the against him under Section 51 of the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act, 2015.

The ED has said that it had the knowledge of Khaitan's unidentified assets which value more than Rs 500 crore.

Khaitan was placed under arrest on January 25 by the agency under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

The had earlier carried out searches against Khaitan in this new case filed under the anti-black money

Khaitan had been arrested by the ED and the CBI a few years ago in connection with their probe in the Rs 3,600-crore AgustaWestland case.

A charge sheet was also filed against him by the two agencies and he was currently out on bail.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, February 08 2019. 21:13 IST