VVIP scam: Court extends custody of Christian Michel

VVIP scam: Court extends custody of Christian Michel

A Delhi court Tuesday issued a production warrant against lawyer Gautam Khaitan, who is an accused in the Rs 3,600-crore AgustaWestland VVIP chopper case.

Special Judge Arvind Kumar issued his production warrant and posted the matter for hearing on May 9.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) told the court that some reports are awaited from the Ministry of Home Affairs regarding other accused such as alleged European middlemen Carlo Gerosa and Guido Haschke.

"It will take time," the agency said.

Other charge-sheeted accused who were present in court are alleged middleman Christian Michel, Rajeev Saxena and his wife Shivani, former IAF chief S P Tyagi and his three brothers.

Khaitan had been arrested by the ED and the CBI a few years ago in connection with their probe but was granted bail in the case.

The CBI had on September 1, 2017, filed a charge sheet in the case in which former India Air Force chief S P Tyagi and British national and alleged middleman Christian Michel were named as accused along with others.

Eight others were also named in the charge sheet in connection with a bribery case in the VVIP chopper deal.

On January 1, 2014, India scrapped the contract with Italy-based Finmeccanica's British subsidiary AgustaWestland for supplying 12 AW-101 VVIP choppers to the IAF over alleged breach of contractual obligations and charges of paying kickbacks to the tune of Rs 423 crore by it to secure the deal.

The CBI had alleged there was an estimated loss of 398.21 million euro (approximately Rs 2,666 crore) to the exchequer in the deal that was signed on February 8, 2010 for the supply of VVIP choppers worth 556.262 million euro.

The company, AgustaWestland, is also one of the accused.

Others named in the charge sheet are -- Tyagi's cousin Sanjeev, alias Julie, former AgustaWestland CEO Bruno Spagnolini and former Finmeccanica chairman Giuseppe Orsi.

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