Mumbai: A special court on Wednesday cleared the decks for extraditing Indian Premiere League (IPL) founder Lalit Modi, accused in the Rs 425 crore money laundering case. The special court designated to hear the case under Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), permitted the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to issue a Letter of Request (LR) to the United Kingdom (UK) government for execution of the non-bailable warrant issued against him on August 6, 2015.
The LR comes as a setback to Modi as this will help the investigating authorities in UK to trace Modi and extradite him to India. The ED had registered a case against Modi in 2012, to probe if the Rs 425 crore deal between World Sports Group (WSG) and Multi Screen Media (MSM) for the television rights of IPL were made illegally.
The agency’s case is that the payments for this deal were made to ‘unauthorized beneficiaries’ and not to cricket regulating bodies as per the terms and rules enshrined in the contract. Advocate Hiten Venegaonkar, the special counsel for ED said, “As per protocol, the LR will be sent to the competent authorities in UK via the External Affairs Ministry.
This will help us bring him back and hopefully conduct trial against him.” Apart from the LR, the special court has till now issued three Letters Rogatories to authorities in Singapore, Mauritius and UAE seeking information pertaining to Modi’s bank accounts and properties.