Fugitive businessman Mehul Choksi’s lawyer has contested the remarks made by Antigua and Barbuda’s Prime Minister Gaston Browne who said that the diamantaire may have taken his girlfriend to Dominica on a romantic trip and got caught.
In a statement, Choksi’s lawyer Vijay Aggarwal alleged that the woman in question was part of the team deployed to abduct him. Aggarwal said that the woman “got friendly with the whole family” and later shifted to a house near Choksi’s residence in Antigua.
Aggarwal further claimed in the statement that the woman invited Choksi to her house for a short while and there other members of the team deployed to pick the businessman. “They grabbed him and threw him in a yacht and took him to Dominica.”
The lawyer’s statement also said that since the woman has vanished, Choksi’s stand that he was kidnapped is valid.
Gaston Browne had earlier told local media that India has sent a private jet to get Mehul Choksi repatriated directly from Dominica. Choksi has Antiguan citizenship and has been living there since he fled India after being named in a financial scam.
A Bombardier Global 5,000 jet of Qatar Executive had mysteriously landed at Dominica’s Douglas Charles airport on Saturday. It’s publicly accessible flight path shows that it took off from New Delhi on May 28 and reached Dominica via Madrid.
PM Browne, who has been vocal about not accepting Choksi back in his country, where he is a citizen, said, “My understanding is that [the] Indian government has sent certain documentation from courts in India to confirm that Choksi is indeed a fugitive”. These documents, Browne added, will be utilised in the court case in Dominica, where a judge is hearing the matter and has put a stay on repatriation till Wednesday.
The latest development comes shortly after Choksi’s first picture emerged in three years, showing him behind bars and with injuries on his hands and a swollen and bruised left eye. The pictures were released by the Antigua Newsroom. His lawyers have alleged abduction attempt from Jolly Harbour in Antigua and Barbuda by Indian and Antiguan officials.
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After Choksi mysteriously disappeared from Antigua last Sunday, a political storm was sparked in Antigua where he is a citizen.
Choksi and his nephew Nirav Modi are wanted in India for allegedly siphoning off ₹13,500 crore of public money from the state-run Punjab National Bank (PNB) using letters of undertaking.