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VVIP chopper deal: Enforcement Directorate to initiate probe

The Enforcement Directorate(ED) will initiate a probe into the purported kickback to the tune of Rs 362 crore  in the VVIP chopper deal from Italian firm Agustawestland.

Published: 14th February 2013 09:41 AM  |   Last Updated: 14th February 2013 09:41 AM   |  A+A-

ED

The Enforcement Directorate(ED) will initiate a probe into the purported kickback to the tune of `362 crore  in the VVIP chopper deal from Italian firm Agustawestland.

Sources said that Rs 362 crore illegal money has been paid through circuitous route using fictitious companies in Tunisia and Mauritius, calling it a ‘financial triangle’. “Prime facie, the evidence available reveals violation of forex laws. A decision to register ECIR will be taken once the CBI files an FIR in the case.” Sources added.

The documents available with Express reveal that Italian investigators had been informed that Lorenzo Borgogni, a former employee of the Finmeccanica, parent company of Agustawestland, has laundered 20 million Euros through Tunisia in March 2012.

During an interrogation by the judicial authority of Naples, Borgogni, who deals with company’s external affairs, had admitted to the entire scandal. He then blew the whistle on the top officials of the company involved in international corruption, money laundering and providing illicit funds to political parties.

The ED, which had requested Italy for the relevant documents, is yet to get any response from it. However, sources said they are already scanning some documents related to alleged transactions.

The ED will also look into the conversation between two alleged Italian middlemen on the alleged money laundering. The conversation was intercepted by the Italian investigators and produced in a court. 

In a conversation, the middlemen (Consultant) involved in the deal had claimed that Indian authorities will take at least 10 years to unearth Tunisia-Mauritius route as it requires a lot of legal formalities. And by the time they were able to solve the case, they would be dead.

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