Fugitive diamond service provider Nirav Modi, combating extradition to India on costs over the practically USD 2 billion Punjab Nationwide Financial institution (PNB) fraud and cash laundering case, is scheduled to look by way of videolink from his London jail for a daily remand listening to at Westminster Magistrates’ Court docket in London right now.
The 48-year-old had moved one more bail software final month with an “unprecedented” home arrest assure, akin to these imposed on terrorist suspects, in addition to citing psychological well being points from being behind bars at Wandsworth Jail in south-west London since his arrest in March.
However the bail plea was turned down by Chief Justice of the Peace Emma Arbuthnot over continued fears of witness intimidation and failure to give up earlier than the courtroom for his extradition trial in Might 2020.
“The previous is a prediction of what may occur sooner or later,” Choose Arbuthnot mentioned on the final listening to on November 6.
The UK’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), which represents the Indian authorities within the extradition proceedings, mentioned there isn’t a additional prospect of an enchantment for bail in the next courtroom because the UK Excessive Court docket has already turned down Nirav Modi’s plea earlier this 12 months.
“You solely get to go as soon as and might’t maintain interesting time and again,” a CPS spokesperson mentioned.
In the meantime, Nirav Modi should seem for “call-over” hearings at Westminster Magistrates’ Court docket till the case administration hearings for his extradition trial kick in from early subsequent 12 months.
The diamond service provider denies the costs of fraud and cash laundering and his defence staff, led by barrister Hugo Keith, has claimed that the Indian authorities has wrongly “blackened” Nirav Modi’s title as a “world-class schemer”.
As a part of the change in circumstances required for a recent bail software, Nirav Modi’s legal professionals had supplied to double the bail bond safety supplied to the courtroom, from the earlier GBP 2 million to GBP four million. They’d additionally knowledgeable the courtroom of assaults on their consumer from fellow prisoners, the newest being an extortion assault by two inmates who entered Nirav Modi’s cell final month and kicked him to the ground and punched him within the face.
“It’s apparent that it was a focused assault following renewed media protection not too long ago by which Nirav Modi is wrongly known as a billionaire diamantaire,” mentioned Mr Keith, who offered the courtroom with media studies to allege that Indian intelligence companies had been concerned in a leak of knowledge from a confidential medical report of Nirav Modi’s fragile psychological well being situation.
“It is rather unlucky certainly that the physician’s report was leaked. It shouldn’t occur and would undermine the courtroom’s belief within the authorities of India, if certainly that emerges to be the supply of the leak,” Choose Arbuthnot had famous.
James Lewis, showing for the CPS on behalf of the Indian authorities, branded the leak as “deplorable” however careworn that it didn’t come from the Indian authorities.
Nirav Modi has been behind bars at Wandsworth, one in every of England’s most overcrowded prisons, since his arrest on March 19 on an extradition warrant executed by Scotland Yard on costs introduced by the Indian authorities. Throughout subsequent hearings, the UK courtroom has been advised that Nirav Modi was the “principal beneficiary” of the fraudulent issuance of letters of enterprise (LoUs) as a part of a conspiracy to defraud PNB after which laundering the proceeds of crime.
His extradition trial is scheduled between Might 11 and 15 subsequent 12 months.