18 May 2023 7:47 AM GMT
The Supreme Court on Thursday issued notice in the bail plea of Aam Aadmi Party leader and former cabinet minister in the Delh government in a money laundering case. Jain has been behind bars since May 2022, awaiting his trial. A bench comprising Justices AS Bopanna and Hima Kohli was considering Jain’s plea challenging the decision of the Delhi High Court to deny him bail...
The Supreme Court on Thursday issued notice in the bail plea of Aam Aadmi Party leader and former cabinet minister in the Delh government in a money laundering case. Jain has been behind bars since May 2022, awaiting his trial.
A bench comprising Justices AS Bopanna and Hima Kohli was considering Jain’s plea challenging the decision of the Delhi High Court to deny him bail last year.
Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, appearing on behalf of the legislator, sought liberty to approach the vacation bench, citing 'extreme health problems'. The senior counsel said, "The man is a skeleton. He has lost 35 kgs. He is facing extreme health problems. He is 416 on the waiting list." Additional Solicitor-General SV Raju appeared for the Enforcement Directorate. The law officer told the bench, "I am on caveat."
The bench pronounced, "Issue notice. Objections can be filed. Liberty granted to approach the vacation bench."
In 2017, the Central Bureau of Investigation accused Jain and others of laundering money to the tune of Rs 11.78 crore during 2010-2012 and Rs 4.63 crores during 2015-16, when he had become a minister in the Delhi government. It was alleged that the money laundering exercise was carried out through three companies – Paryas Infosolution, Indo Metalimpex, Akinchan Developers, and Mangalayatan Projects.
Jain allegedly had given money to some Kolkata-based entry operators of different shell companies for accommodation entries, through his associates. The entry operators had then allegedly re-routed the money in the form of investment through shares in Jain-linked companies after ‘layering them through shell companies’.
The case lodged by the Directorate of Enforcement is based on the CBI complaint and alleges that Jain signed conveyance deeds for the purchase of agricultural lands by Prayas Infosolutions in 2011 and 2012. The central agency has further alleged that the land was later transferred to family members of Jain's associates who denied knowledge about the transfers.
Last year, the ED year attached properties worth Rs. 4.81 crores belonging to five companies and others in the money laundering case against Jain and others. These assets reportedly were in the name of Akinchan Developers, Indo Metal Impex, Paryas Infosolutions, Mangalayatan Projects, and J.J. Ideal Estate etc. The Aam Aadmi Party leader has been in custody in connection with the money laundering case since May 30, 2022.
In November of last year, the bail application of the former cabinet minister was dismissed by a trial court, which said that it had prima facie come on record that Jain was ‘actually involved’ in concealing the proceeds of crime by giving cash to the Kolkata-based entry operators and thereafter, bringing the cash into three companies against the sale of shares to show that income of these three companies was untainted.
Subsequently, his bail was denied by the Delhi High Court as well last month, on the ground that he was an influential person and had the potential of tampering with evidence. As such, the twin conditions under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 were held to not be satisfied. Justice Dinesh Kumar Sharma also denied bail to co-accused Vaibhav Jain and Ankush Jain.
Satyendar Kumar Jain v. Directorate of Enforcement | Special Leave Petition (Criminal) No. 6561 of 2023
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