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Gold smuggling caes: Kerala HC refuses to stay FIR against ED officials

Tushar Mehta, Solicitor General of India, S V Raju Additional Solicitor General and Special Public Prosecutor T A Unnikrishnan appeared for the ED.

Published: 25th March 2021 05:15 AM  |   Last Updated: 25th March 2021 05:15 AM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

KOCHI: Kerala High Court on Wednesday declined to stay the FIR registered by the Crime Branch against certain unnamed Enforcement Directorate officers for allegedly forcing Swapna Suresh, prime accused in the diplomatic gold smuggling case as well as in the money laundering case, to allegedly give false statements against Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

When the petition filed by P Radhakrishnan, Deputy Director, Enforcement Directorate, Kochi, seeking to quash the case or a CBI probe as an alternative, Additional Solicitor General SV Raju contended that the FIR was vexatious and frivolous and was registered only for the purpose of creating false evidence against the petitioner.

That should not be permitted and the counsel sought to stay the probe. Opposing the plea, senior prosecutor Suman Chakravarthy submitted that there should not be any stay. The Crime Branch is recording the statement of witnesses as part of the investigation and that may not be interdicted. 

Tushar Mehta, Solicitor General of India, S V Raju Additional Solicitor General and Special Public Prosecutor T A Unnikrishnan appeared for the ED.

“It is submitted by the Senior Public Prosecutor that, since the state is seeking time, there need not be any apprehension of coercive steps, based on the FIR being taken till March 30,” the court observed. The court expressed displeasure over submission of statements of the accused and mirror images of WhatsApp messages collected by other investigating agencies.



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