New Delhi :
Pearls Group CMD Nirmal Singh Bhangoo and three others, arrested in connection with alleged swindling of Rs 45,000 crore from over five crore investors, were today sent to 14-day judicial custody by a Delhi court.
Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Sugandha Aggarwal sent the accused in judicial custody till February 6 after CBI said it does not want their further custodial interrogation.
“Today accused persons have been produced in court after 14-day police custody remand. Now an application has been moved seeking 14-day judicial custody. For the reasons stated in the application, the same is allowed,” the court said.
Meanwhile, the Maharashtra Police also moved the court seeking Bhangoo’s custody in another case and the plea has been kept for hearing on January 25.
Apart from Bhangoo, CMD of Pearls Golden Forest Ltd (PGF) and ex-Chairman of Pearls Australasia Pty Limited, Sukhdev Singh, MD and Promoter-Director of Pearls Agrotech Corporation Ltd (PACL), Gurmeet Singh, Executive Director (Finance) and Subrata Bhattacharya, ED in the PGF/PACL were arrested by CBI.
During the hearing, advocates Manish Jain and Vijay Aggarwal told the court that Bhangoo has recently undergone kidney transplant and he be checked regularly in jail.
To this, the court directed that jail authorities shall give proper care and medication to Bhangoo.
The accused were arrested on January 8, after two years of CBI probe ordered by the Supreme Court in the country’s largest reported ponzi scam. The accused were arrested under charges of criminal conspiracy and cheating.
During the probe in the last two years, CBI has said it has found 1,300 bank accounts of the suspect company, their directors and associated firms.
CBI had claimed that huge money was bungled by accused who had duped so many investors by luring them with attractive land deals and it had frozen the group’s assets, mostly fixed deposit receipts, to the tune of Rs 280 crore and an additional Rs 108 crore was deposited with Delhi High Court.
CBI had said it has managed to seize 20,000 property documents believed to be of Rs 5,000 crore of purchase value. It is estimated by CBI that these properties could be about Rs 1.85 lakh crore, going by the present market rates.
CBI has claimed in the FIR that PACL and PGF were running the schemes illegally and both firms were allegedly engaged in fraudulent activities including forgery in their operations.