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Rs 263-crore income tax refund fraud case: Mumbai man remanded in judicial custody

Citing its investigation, the Enforcement Directorate said there is reason to believe that the person, Purshottam Chavan, is guilty of the offence of money laundering

PTI Mumbai Published 28.05.24, 04:56 AM
Representational image.

Representational image. File Photo

A special court dealing with cases under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) here on Monday sent a man to 14-day judicial custody in a Rs 263-crore income tax refund fraud linked money laundering case investigation.

Citing its investigation, the Enforcement Directorate said there is reason to believe that the person, Purshottam Chavan, is guilty of the offence of money laundering.

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He is “actively involved in crime” and played a “crucial role” at various stages in laundering the proceeds of crime, said ED.

The agency arrested Chavan on May 20, a day after the agency raided his premises in Mumbai.

He was produced before special PMLA judge MG Deshpande at the end of his remand on Monday. The court sent him to judicial custody as sought by the probe agency.

The ED told the court that the accused has destroyed evidence which could lead to unearthing the end utilization of the funds received by him.

The accused, during his custodial interrogation, did not share details about the amount of funds he actually received, its mode and manner as well as further utilization of the money, the ED said.

Further, in respect of property documents recovered from his residence, the probe agency said the accused did not disclose facts.

Therefore, his judicial custody is very essential as his release at this stage will definitely hamper the ongoing investigation, the ED said.

The court then remanded the accused to judicial custody.

The investigation pertains to alleged fraudulent generation and issuance of TDS (tax deducted at source) refunds from the Income-tax department to the tune of Rs 263.95 crore.

A case registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is the basis of the ED’s money laundering case.

The ED has earlier arrested the main accused and a former senior tax assistant Tanaji Mandal Adhikari, Bhushan Patil, Rajesh Shetty and Rajesh Brijlal Batreja in this case.

Batreja and Chavan were “in touch regularly and shared incriminating messages related to hawala transactions and diversion of the proceeds of crime”, the ED alleged.

Assets worth Rs 168 crore of various accused have been attached till now and a charge sheet was filed in September 2023 by the ED against Adhikari and ten others.

Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.

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