Hitesh Patel, an accused in Sterling Biotech case, was Friday detained in Albania, news agency PTI reported. The arrest was made on March 20 following an Interpol notice and Patel is expected to be extradited to India shortly, the report added.
“Patel is an accused in the case and is the brother-in-law of the main accused in the case, the Sandesara brothers (Nitin and Chetan Sandesara). He is expected to be extradited to India soon,” officials said.
The company, owned by the Sandesara family from Vadodara, is alleged to have defaulted on loans amounting to Rs 8,100 crore taken from a consortium of banks. The CBI has also booked Nitin Sandesara, the owner of the company, his brother Chetan Sandesara, Chetan’s wife Deepti Sandesara in connection with the case.
The CBI has alleged that the company secured the loans from a consortium of banks led by the Andhra Bank, and these have now turned into non-performing assets. It is alleged that the company took loans of Rs 5,383 crore from a consortium led by Andhra Bank, which later turned into non-performing assets. The case is also believed to involve politicians and bureaucrats. The ED alleges that Patel was instrumental in getting dummy directors for shell companies used by Sandesaras.
The Sandesara brothers have been absconding since the case was registered by the CBI in October 2017. The ED is probing a case of money laundering against the company and the Sandesaras.
Apart from Sterling Biotech and the Sandesara brothers, the CBI had named three other directors of the firm, Dipti Chetan Sandesara, Rajbhushan Omprakash Dixit and Vilas Joshi; chartered accountant Hemant Hathi; former Andhra Bank director Anup Garg; and some unidentified persons.
The Enforcement Directorate had ensued an Interpol red corner notice against Patel on March 11.