After nearly 11 months long chase, CBI today arrested Hyderabad-based businessman Alex Joseph in connection with its probe in car import scam in which several high-end imported cars were sold to politicians and businessmen allegedly by evading customs duty.
The cars, allegedly imported by 52-year Joseph in connivance with officials of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, were allegedly sold to some big businessmen and politicians including DMK leader M K Stalin and BCCI Chief N Srinivasan, CBI sources said.
During 11-month long investigation, CBI had seized 33 luxury cars like Rolls Royce, Range Rover, Land Cruiser Prado, BMW, Merecedes Benz and Hummer.
CBI has alleged that Joseph imported high-end foreign cars for several years, permitted only on Transfer of Residence Rules under Customs Act.
After getting orders, he allegedly ordered cars at the foreign country with used car dealers and later hired Indian working class nationals being repatriated to India on cancellation of work permits, CBI sources said. These cars would then be consigned to India through Chennai, Mumbai and Cochin ports in the names of these workers.
In this connection, CBI had conducted raids in 18 places including the residence of Stalin.
Several cases have been registered against Joseph at various places in India by the Enforcement Directorate, Income Tax, Customs, DRI and Kerala police. However, Joseph managed to escape from India and fled to UAE.
He had been absconding from the date of registration of the FIR in the present case in March last year.
Another look out notice was issued to locate him in the event of his exit from India.