ED Summons Actor Prakash Raj In ₹100 Crore Ponzi Scam Case

ED Summons Actor Prakash Raj In ₹100 Crore Ponzi Scam Case

The investigation pertains to a case against Pranav Jewellers, a partnership firm based in Tiruchirapalli

N ChithraUpdated: Thursday, November 23, 2023, 09:11 PM IST
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Prakash Raj | File photo

Popular south Indian actor Prakash Raj, who has also donned some roles in Bollywood, has been summoned by the Directorate of Enforcement (ED) for recording his statement in an alleged Rs 100 crore Ponzi scheme involving a jewellery trader in Tiruchi in central Tamil Nadu. 

Prakash Raj, a vocal critic of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, was the brand ambassador of the jeweller under scrutiny. 

Sources said the agency would obtain a statement from the actor when he appears before it. 

Three days ago, the ED conducted searches at jewellery shop, run as a partnership firm, in Tiruchi, under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002 in the case of a Ponzi Scheme. 

“During the searches, various incriminating documents, unexplained cash of Rs 23.70 lakh, bullion/ gold jewellery weighing 11.60 Kg were seized. ED initiated investigation on the FIR registered by Economic Offences Wing, Trichy against M/s Pranav Jewellers and others alleging that Rs 100 crore was collected from public by M/s Pranav Jewellers, under the guise of a gold investment scheme with the promise of high returns,” the agency said. 

The jewellery shop, however, failed to return the amount to such investors.

 “ED investigation revealed that M/s Pranav Jewellers and other connected persons cheated the public by diverting public funds to shell entities/ entry providers under the garb of purchase of bullion/ gold ornaments. Searches also revealed that the supplier parties in the books of M/s Pranav Jewellers were entry providers, who during the investigation confessed to have provided adjustment/ accommodation entries to M/s Pranav Jewellers for amounts over Rs 100 crores,” the agency added. 

According to ED, these supplier parties “also confessed to have given cash to the accused persons in lieu of bank payments. Further investigation is under progress.”

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