Fri, 01 Jul 2022

New Delhi [India], May 18 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Wednesday issued notices to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Enforcement Directorate (ED) on bail petitions of British Citizen Christian Michel in connection with the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper scam being probed by the agencies.

A bench headed by Justice DY Chandrachud issued notice to the CBI and ED on Michael's bail pleas and sought their responses within four weeks and listed the matter for hearing in July.

Advocate appearing for Michel contended before the top court that the investigations are still not completed and he has undergone three years and six months as of now and before extradition, he was in Dubai custody.

Michel has challenged in the apex court the March 11 order of the Delhi High Court which had refused to grant him bail.

In the High Court, ED and CBI had opposed the bail petition filed by Michel in connection with the VVIP chopper case.

CBI had said that he has a flight risk and it fears that because of the way the British government is helping him, he might flee and will never return.

Michel had contended before the High Court that all the other accused in the case got bail in 60 days and he is the only one who hasn't been given the bail and suffering incarnation.

According to the bail petition, Michel said that as a bail condition he will be available to join the investigation and trial as and when required and has never sought to evade the process of law.

Earlier, the trial court had rejected his bail plea and had shown its displeasure with the British High Commission for sending a letter addressed to it stating that his medical condition of Michel and his pre-trial detention of two and half years may be taken into account when his bail application is considered.

Christian Michel James was extradited in 2018 after India won the extradition case in Dubai. Christian Michel, the alleged middleman in the deal, was deported from the UAE and is currently in judicial custody. The Dubai-based businessman Rajeev Saxena was extradited to India on January 31, 2019, in connection with the Rs 3,600-crore alleged scam relating to the purchase of 12 VVIP helicopters from AgustaWestland. (ANI)

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