The Westminster Magistrates' Court in London will pronounce its judgment on whether fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi will be extradited to India in connection with the Rs 13,000 crore bank fraud case. The UK court completed the hearing regarding Nirav Modi's extradition on January 8 and set February 25 as the date for the delivery of its judgement.
Modi who is at the Wandsworth Prison in London appeared before the court through a video-link. The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) that is representing the Indian investigative agencies said that Modi was involved in a 'ponzi-like scheme' and is responsible for money laundering, fraud and cheating.
The court was told by the CPS that Nirav Modi cheated the bank using three of his firms, Diamonds R Us, Solar Exports and Stellar Diamonds after he conspired with bank officials. The CPS also told the court that Modi gave death threats to a witness and warned him of testifying against him.
Nirav Modi's legal counsel Clare Montgomery said that the Arthur Road Jail in Mumbai has no arrangements to deal with Modi's mental condition, increasing his risk of committing suicide.
Indian authorities, in their submission, told the UK court that Arthur Road Jail is fully capable of handling such health conditions and there are three hospitals nearby the jail. Barrack number 12 of Arthur Road Jail has been kept ready for Nirav Modi if he is extradited to India. "As in the Assange (Wikileaks founder Julian Assange) case, the issues here evidently are the same - the mental condition of Modi and the treatment he would receive given the prison conditions in India," said Montgomery.
Nirav Modi has been lodged in London Jail since March 19, 2019 after a request from the Central Bureau of Investigation and Enforcement Directorate.