The Madras High Court on Wednesday stayed an appellate tribunal for money laundering cases order for release of Rs 3.63 crore, seized by the Enforcement Directorate from two Mumbai firms in an alleged money laundering case. The PMLA tribunal had ordered the release of the money saying that out of nearly Rs 4.61 crore, seized by the ED, Rs 3.63 crore of Mangal Bullion was not involved in the money laundering and had directed its forthwith release to the firm.
The bench of justices M M Sundresh and R Mahadevan stayed the ATFE’s order for four weeks on a plea by the ED, which had challenged the release of the money to the firm with links to Sukash Chandrasekar, allegedly involved in a slew of crimes.
Sukash is also involved in the bid to bribe an Election Commission official on behalf of AIADMK (Amma) leader T T V Dhinakaran, who was arrested last month by Delhi Police.
Earlier, on a complaint by Canara Bank, Chennai, the Central Crime branch of Tamil Nadu had on March 19, 2013 lodged an FIR against a bank official and two directors of M/s Future Techniks Pvt Ltd for duping the bank of Rs 19.21 crore.
During investigation, the involvement of the prime accused Sukash Chandrasekar and others had came to light.
Sukash was arrested in a joint operation by Delhi and Chennai police during July-August 2013 at Delhi. Sukash had allegedly transferred several tranches of money to Mangal Bullion Private Limited.
The ED had attached accounts of Mangal Bullion and Mangal Royal alleging money laundering.
Both the Mumbai firms had moved the tribunal against the attachment of their account with the tribunal ordering the release of Rs 3.63 crore on their plea.
Central government standing counsel G Hema, representing Joint Director of Enforcement Directorate, Chennai, submitted that amounts totalling Rs 19.22 crore were transferred by Future Techniks as agreed between Sukash Chandrasekar and businessman Ajit Jain for sharing the proceeds of crime in the ratio of 60 and 40 percent respectively.
The burden had devolved on the companies to prove that the amounts disbursed by Future Techniks as stated by Sukash were not at the instance of Mangal Royal Jewels and Mangal Bullion with regard to their commercial dealings with other companies, the ED added.