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Judgment day in Nirav Modi UK extradition case on February 25

LONDON: The judgment day for whether or not wished diamond service provider Nirav Modi may be extradited to India to face costs of fraud and cash laundering in relation to the Punjab National Bank rip-off case has been set as February 25.
District decide Samuel Goozee confirmed the timeline on Friday, on the finish of closing submissions within the case at Westminster Magistrates’ courtroom in London.
The wished diamond service provider stays remanded in custody and can seem for a routine 28-day remand listening to through videolink within the interim on February 5.
Earlier on Friday, the decide heard that Nirav Modi is chargeable for overseeing a “ponzi-like scheme” that induced huge fraud to PNB.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), arguing on behalf of the Indian authorities, focussed on laying out the prima facie case of fraud, cash laundering and perverting the course of justice in opposition to the 49-year-old jeweller, who adopted the proceedings on the second day of a two-day listening to through videolink from a room at Wandsworth Jail in south-west London.
The courtroom was taken via proof already introduced earlier than Westminster Magistrates’ courtroom in London throughout the course of a number of hearings final yr with the intention to wrap up the extradition listening to this week.
“The straightforward and stark truth is that he (Nirav Modi) used his three partnership corporations to accumulate billions of {dollars} price of credit score which was completely unsecured and LoUs [letters of undertaking] had been issued for wholly bogus commerce,” mentioned CPS barrister Helen Malcolm, showing through videolink for the part-remote courtroom proceedings as a result of coronavirus lockdown.
“Whereas the defence claims this can be a mere business dispute, there’s a plethora of proof to level to a ponzi-like scheme the place new LoUs had been used to repay previous ones,” she mentioned.
A ponzi scheme sometimes refers to an funding rip-off which generates funds for earlier buyers with cash taken from later buyers and the CPS sought to ascertain that Modi used his companies – Diamonds R Us, Photo voltaic Exports and Stellar Diamonds – to make fraudulent use of PNB’s LoUs in a conspiracy with banking officers.
Malcolm’s arguments additionally reiterated earlier proof of a video by a former worker claiming to have acquired demise threats from Nirav Modi and dummy administrators of shell corporations being compelled to depart India to evade the investigations launched by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Enforcement Directorate (ED).
“These administrators had been pressured to get them additional out of the way in which from the Indian investigation,” famous Malcolm.
Drawing Justice Goozee’s consideration to “real and bona fide costs” filed in opposition to Nirav Modi in India, she burdened that the decide want solely to fulfill himself on whether or not there’s a prima facie case in opposition to Modi to be extradited to face trial on the fees.
Modi’s defence crew, led by barrister Clare Montgomery, in her counter-arguments has challenged that premise as a result of it might strategy the case with an “extraordinarily broad brush”.
“It requires correct evaluation as to why the offences can’t quantity to an allegation of financial institution fraud, as there isn’t any case of operative deception,” mentioned Montgomery, referring to knowledgeable proof on Indian regulation given by former Indian excessive courtroom Choose Abhay Thipsay final yr.
She additionally sought to ascertain that your complete course of comprised of “authorised although ill-advised lending” that came about in “broad daylight” and none of her consumer’s actions met the authorized threshold of perverting the course of justice.
On Thursday, the decide heard detailed arguments from either side about why Nirav Modi’s “deteriorating” psychological well being situation does or doesn’t meet the Part 91 threshold of the Extradition Act 2003 – which has most lately been used within the UK to dam the extradition of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange on the grounds of it being “unjust and oppressive” as he’s a excessive suicide danger.
“As within the Assange case, the problems right here evidentially are the identical – the psychological situation of Nirav Modi and the therapy he would obtain given the jail situations in India,” mentioned Montgomery, pointing to her consumer’s extreme melancholy and danger of suicide as a consequence of his prolonged incarceration since March 2019 and known as for his discharge.
The CPS challenged the defence stance to say that the 2 circumstances had been of a “utterly totally different nature” and as a substitute sought an adjournment within the occasion that Part 91 was to be engaged, to permit an unbiased analysis of medical information by a guide psychiatrist and applicable assurances be acquired by way of his care in India.
Nirav Modi is the topic of two units of prison proceedings, with the CBI case referring to a large-scale fraud upon PNB via the fraudulent acquiring of LoUs or mortgage agreements, and the ED case referring to the laundering of the proceeds of that fraud. He additionally faces two further costs of “inflicting the disappearance of proof” and intimidating witnesses or “prison intimidation to trigger demise” added to the CBI case.
The jeweller has been in jail since he was arrested on March 19, 2019, on an extradition warrant executed by Scotland Yard and his makes an attempt at looking for bail have been repeatedly turned down.

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