Mumbai Police arrest ex-CFO Shashidhar Kotian in Rs 5600 crore NSEL scam

Mumbai: Mumbai Police have arrested former chief financial officer of NSEL Shashidhar Kotian in connection with the Rs 5,600-crore now-shuttered commodities spot exchange scam, a senior Economic Offences Wing (EOW) official has said.

Kotian was produced before a court Friday, which remanded him to police custody till January 28, the official said. The agency sought his remand on the ground that they have come across from fresh facts and need to confront with the same. The NSEL scam refers to the payment crisis driven by the physical absence of the commodities against the invested money. As many as 13,000 investors have claimed losses after the trading platform  faced a payment crisis, forcing the government to order its shuttering.

The crisis broke out on July 31, 2013 when the exchanged failed to honour it commitments to its investors since then the regulator banned promotor Jignesh Shah from running and managing almost half-a dozen exchanges he had set up in country and outside, after finding him not “fit and proper” to do so. However, his company 63 Moons Technologies (which was earlier known as Financial Technologies), where he is chairman emeritus, owned 99.99 per cent in NSEL. He owns around 45 per cent in 63 Moons.

On December 27, 2018, the Mumbai police filed charge sheets against 63 entities– 27 individuals and 36 companies. Companies named as accused in the chargesheet include NSEL, 63 Moons Technologies, India Bullion Market Association; commodities brokerages like Anand Rathi Commodities, Geofin Comtrade and India Infoline Commodities among others.

Several other companies who also defaulted on paying back investors have also been named as accused in the chargesheet which lists cheating, criminal conspiracy under IPC and several sections of the Maharashtra Protection of Investors and Depositors Act and includes a statement of 520 witnesses and details of 509 bank accounts. Earlier in 2014, the police had filed a chargesheet against six individuals and subsequently against NSEL founder Jignesh Shah who was arrested on May 7, 2014 and is now out on bail.

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