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    Published On : Tue, Dec 4th, 2018
    National News | By Nagpur Today Nagpur News

    Agusta case middleman Christian Michel being extradited to India

    British national Christian Michel, wanted by Indian investigative agencies in the Rs 3,600 crore AgustaWestland VVIP choppers deal case, was taken to the Dubai International Airport on Tuesday, where he would take a flight to India, according to a media report.

    The Court of Cassation had in November upheld a lower court order which said that Michel could be extradited.

    Michel, 54, was taken to the Dubai International Airport on Tuesday, where he would take a flight to India, the Khaleej Times reported.

    India officially made the request to the Gulf nation in 2017 for his extradition, based on the criminal investigations conducted in the case by the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate (ED).

    The ED, in its chargesheet filed against Michel in June 2016, had alleged that he received 30 million (about Rs 225 crore) from AgustaWestland.

    The money was nothing but ‘kickbacks’ paid by the firm to execute the 12 helicopter deal in favour of the firm in ‘guise of’ genuine transactions for performing multiple work contracts in the country, according to the chargesheet.

    Michel is one of the three middlemen being probed in the case, besides Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa, by the ED and the CBI.

    Both the agencies have notified an Interpol red corner notice (RCN) against him after the court issued a non-bailable warrant against him.

    The ED investigation found that remittances made by Michel through his Dubai-based firm Global Services to a media firm he floated in Delhi, along with two Indians, were made from the funds which he got from AgustaWestland through ‘criminal activity’ and corruption being done in the chopper deal that led to the subsequent generation of proceeds of crime.

    Michel denies the charges.

    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 Indian Air Force over alleged breach of contractual obligations and charges of paying kickbacks to the tune of Rs 423 crore by it for securing the deal.

    The Central Bureau of Investigation has alleged there was an estimated loss of 398.21 million (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.

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