Vijay Mallya becomes first Indian to be declared a 'fugitive economic offender'
January 5, 2019 04:40 PM NPT
MUMBAI, Jan 5: A special court in Mumbai declared Indian businessman Vijay Mallya a fugitive economic offender on Saturday, local media reported. He is the first Indian to get the tag after Parliament passed the Fugitive Economic Offenders Act last year to allow the seizure of domestic assets of such individuals.
On June 22, the Enforcement Directorate had moved the special court, which hears cases under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, to declare Mallya a fugitive economic offender and confiscate Rs 12,000-crore worth of his properties. The Bombay High Court and the special court rejected Mallya’s petitions against the agency’s request. Last month, the Supreme Court, too, refused to stay proceedings initiated by the Enforcement Directorate.
Mallya has been accused of cheating banks of Rs 9,000 crore and is fighting a number of lawsuits in the United Kingdom and India related to fraud and money laundering allegations. He fled India and moved to London in March 2016, but a court there ordered his extradition to India last month.
Earlier, Mallya’s lawyer had told a special Prevention of Money Laundering Act court that the businessman left India legally and cannot be declared a fugitive because he was arrested in the United Kingdom on the basis of a warrant issued against him by an Indian court.