Indian fugitive prepares to fight extradition and right to citizenship

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By Elesha George

In February 2020, the Antigua and Barbuda High Court will hear arguments by the lawyers of diamantaire Mehul Chinubbhai Choksi and the Government of Antigua and Barbuda, to determine whether or not the Indian fugitive should be stripped of his Antigua and Barbuda citizenship. 

“The Prime Minister [Gaston Browne] has given a notice that he intends to deprive Mr Choksi citizenship on the ground of willful concealment of material facts. We are challenging that. The date comes up for that first hearing in February and we await that hearing,” Choksi’s attorney Dr David Dorsett told OBSERVER media.

Choksi is wanted by the Judicial Authorities of India regarding a US two billion-dollar bank scam involving India’s Punjab National Bank (PNB). The diamantaire and his company allegedly bypassed PNB’S core banking system and issued fraudulent Letters of Understanding (LoUs) for payments to suppliers without making entries in the banking software about the LoUs.

The billionaire, along with his nephew Nirav Modi, is charged with criminal conspiracy, criminal breach of trust, cheating and dishonesty including delivery of property, corruption and money laundering.

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