New Delhi, Nov 2 (IANS) The CBI has carried out searches at six places in Delhi and Kolkata in connection with its probe into the AgustaWestland chopper case and seized documents, cash and jewellery, an official said on Thursday.
During searches,among others, at the premises of Om Metals Managing Director Sunil Kothari in Delhi, Abhinand Vanchiya Director N.K. Jain and Rajesh Kumar Jain in Kolkata on Wednesday, several documents and Rs 55.68 lakh in cash were seized from Kothari’s residence and Rs 29 lakh from N.K. Jain’s residence, the official told IANS.
The agency also seized jewellery worth over Rs one crore from the lockers of N.K. Jain’s wife and their daughter-in-law.
Income Tax authorities had been informed about the seizure of cash, the official said.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has alleged that the accused had laundered the money of three alleged European middlemen — Christian Michel, Guido Haschke, and Carlo Gerosa — given to the former Indian Air Force chief, Air Chief Marshal S.P. Tyagi, and his cousin Sanjeev alias Julie through shell companies.
The CBI official said that a request for the extradition of Gerosa had been made to the Ministry of External Affairs for onward transmission to Italy’s Ministry of Justice.
The CBI action comes in a case registered on March 12, 2013, wherein the agency alleged that Tyagi took bribes of several crores of rupees through middlemen and a complex route of companies in several countries from AgustaWestland to change the specifications of the contract for the supply of 12 choppers for VVIP duties.
The specifications were related to reducing operational flight ceiling from originally proposed 6,000 metres to 4,500 metres and bringing down the cabin height to 1.8 metres to enable the company win the contract.
The CBI said the illegal gratification was accepted through different companies in the name of consultancy services.
The agency filed a charge sheet on September 1 in the Rs 3,726 crore AgustaWestland chopper case against Tyagi, Sanjeev, then IAF Vice Chief J.S. Gujral, advocate Gautam Khaitan, Italian defence and aerospace major Finmeccanica’s former chief Giuseppe Orsi, former AgustaWestland CEO Bruno Spagnolini, and three alleged European middleman.
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