Corporate espionage: Court dismisses bail plea of six accused

Corporate espionage: Court dismisses bail plea of six accused

A Delhi court today dismissed the bail pleas of six persons, including five corporate executives, arrested for their alleged role in the Petroleum Ministry documents leak case.

Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Sanjay Khanagwal rejected the bail pleas of Shailesh Saxena of Reliance Industries Ltd, Vinay Kumar of Essar, Subhash Chandra from Jubilant Energy, Reliance ADAG DGM Rishi Anand and Cairns India's GM K K Naik.
Apart from these five, the court also refused the bail plea of a Defence Ministry's house-keeping staff, Virender Kumar, who was arrested on February 23 for his alleged involvement in the case.

"All the bail pleas are dismissed," the court said.
During arguments on the bail pleas, the Crime Branch of Delhi Police opposed the applications of the accused saying documents recovered from them were being analysed to unearth a "deep rooted nexus" involving several persons who were "trespassing" into offices of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry.

"If the accused are released at this stage, they may influence the witnesses and tamper with the evidence which may adversely affect the investigation," the investigating officer (IO) said before the court.

The IO also told the court that they were analysing the call detail records of the accused and needed more time to examine the recovered documents besides hardware devices like laptops and mobiles.

The police had earlier filed a written reply to the bail pleas saying that the probe was at a preliminary stage and the entire nexus needed to be unearthed.

The counsels for the accused, however, contended before the court that the Crime Branch was "sitting" over the matter and till date they have not specified the nature of documents that have been recovered from them.

They further said the accused have been undergoing incarceration for over a month and the Crime Branch's submission that they were yet to analyse the documents was based on their whims and fancies.

Earlier, the court had extended the judicial custody of six accused including the five corporate executives, who were arrested in the case.

The Delhi Police had on February 20 arrested the five corporate executives alleging that they used to procure documents from other arrested accused Lalta Prasad and Rakesh, and used to pay them.

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