Fugitive businessman Mehul Choksi travelled to Dominica with his girlfriend and ended up in police custody, said Gaston Browne, the Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda.
In a major development, Antiguan Prime Minister (PM) Gaston Browne has confirmed that a private jet from India has arrived in the Caribbean nation of Dominica where fugitive economic offender Mehul Choksi is presently caught up.
Speaking to a radio channel, PM Browne said, “My understanding is that Indian government has sent certain documents from courts in India to confirm that he is indeed a fugitive and my understanding is that the documents will be utilised in the court case as you know the judge in Dominica has put a stay on deportation till Wednesday.
So Indian government seems to be going all out to make sure he is repatriated to India to stand trial.”
Choksi was reported to have gone missing from Antigua. Thereafter, on Wednesday (26 May), he was arrested by Dominica Police.
Since then he has been in the custody of the Dominica Police.
It should be noted that PM Browne had earlier said that he would not accept Choksi back in Antigua and that he wants him to be repatriated straight to India where he is wanted.
Meanwhile, the Dominica court has put a stay on the deportation. The case will now be heard on 2 June.
During an interview, Gaston Browne said, “Mehul Choksi made a mistake and the information we are getting is that Choksi travelled with his girlfriend but he was caught in Dominica and now he can be deported back to India.”
Choksi, the alleged mastermind of the Rs 13,000 crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case, however, has alleged through his lawyers that he was abducted on May 23 of this year. He claims that people with ‘links to India’ abducted him in collaboration with Antiguan officials.
He was then beaten up, tortured and taken to Dominica in a vessel where he was arrested, claim Mehul Choksi’s lawyers.
Mehul Choksi’s lawyer Vijay Aggarwal said on Sunday, “All these theories of Mehul Choksi fleeing from Antigua voluntarily are opposed to common sense.
Firstly, he has a stay in his favour in Antigua and secondly, I have been informed that his passport is in Antigua only. Nobody will try to escape without having his passport in his pocket.”
The police chief of Antigua and Barbuda has denied all such allegations levelled by Mehul Choksi and his legal representatives.