Mumbai: Diamantaire Mehul Choksi, a key accused in the USD 2 billion PNB fraud, claimed on Friday that his company Gitanjali Gems has “trade receivables” of over Rs 8,000 crore, enough to repay his loans.
The absconding diamantaire made the claim in a plea filed before the special judge for Prevention of Money Laundering Act cases, V C Barde.
The plea sought a direction to the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to “secure” all assets of Choksi and his firms, including the trade receivables that have not been attached until now.
The ED has not yet attached number of his assets, including trade receivables of Rs 8,567 crore as shown in the consolidated balance sheet of March 2017 of Gitanjali Gems, the application read.
The alleged proceeds of crime were Rs 6,097.63 crore so the trade receivables were sufficient to pay off the entire loan amount of the banks, it said.
Choksi was not able to recover this money as his entire business was closed down after a case was registered against him and others, it said.
Trade receivables are amounts billed by a business to its customers when it delivers goods or services.
In another application, Choksi urged the court to direct the ED to interrogate him in Antigua, where is living at present. He also sought the court’s permission to appear before it through video conference till he was “fit” to travel back to India.
The court asked the investigating agency to file its reply to all these pleas by October 10.
The scam at the public sector lender Punjab National Bank is related to fraudulent issuance of Letters of Understanding (LoU) to the companies of Choksi and his nephew and absconding co- accused Nirav Modi.
LoU is a guarantee given by the issuing bank to Indian banks having branches abroad for granting a short-term credit to the applicant.