Nirav Modi willing to be tagged through electronic device if granted bail, says lawyer at UK court hearing; verdict tomorrow
The UK High Court on Tuesday began hearing in the fugitive diamond merchant Nirav Modi's appeal against a lower court's order to deny him bail as he fights his extradition from Britain to India.
Modi's Claire Montgomery in her argument read out some email exchange between Nirav Modi and his brother. "The emails clearly show that there is no evidence of any sort of witness interference. We have seen witnesses from Abu Dhabi who have replied to emails from the Enforcement Directorate (ED)," Montgomery said. Further in her argument, Montgomery also said that Modi moved to the United Kingdom to raise capital and is willing to be tagged through an electronic device if granted bail.
"He moved here to raise capital, to explore where in the world he needed to be immigration wise. If he is given bail, he is willing to be tagged through an electronic device, have a phone that can be tracked," the barrister said. Montgomery also pointed out that as an extradition case is starting against Modi, there is no way he would run. The lawyer also informed the court that Modi's daughter and son will be soon moving to UK for higher studies.
According to news agency PTI, Judge Simler intervened to indicate that she has noted that Modi does possess the 'means' to flee the UK and that factor must be a feature in a case involving 'such sizeable funds'. She is expected to give her ruling in the matter later on Tuesday after hearing all the arguments presented by Modi's legal team and the UK Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), on behalf of the Indian government.
Crown Prosecution Service representing Indian Government in Royal Courts of Justice in London on Nirav Modi's bail plea pointed out that allegations are of conniving and criminal acts. The Judge, however, said these are just allegations and these will be dealt with in due course. Judge Simler further explained what she understood of the case where dummy partners were used to issue letter of understandings and money was diverted to different companies.
Crown Prosecution Service objected to Modi's lawyer's argument and said that if the fugitive businessman is given bail during extradition hearings, then that is another thing, but he should not be given bail at this time as he faces serious charges. Judge Simler further said that at this stage Modi has got highly designed legal team in place, who are preparing to face the Indian Government to stop the extradition. "He has a good chance to fail the extradition altogether and if he is extradited then he could be arrested at that time," she added.
Modi has already been denied bail at three previous attempts at Westminster Magistrates' Court in London, as the judge ruled there was "substantial risk" that he would fail to surrender and deemed the bail security offered as insufficient. The fugitive businessman has remained behind bars in judicial custody since his arrest in March 2019.
(With inputs from agencies)
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