New Delhi, Dec 17 (Agency) The Directorate of Enforcement (ED) on Thursday said that it has attached movable and immovable properties worth Rs 1.12 crore of a Bullion Trader of Surat under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA) in the Demonetisation case. According to the ED officials, the accused was identified as Hemanshu R Shah. The ED sleuths attached Hemanshu’s immovable property worth Rs 94.12 lakh and also seized fixed deposits worth Rs 18 lakh, held in the bank account of Hemanshu’s firm Shah M G Choksi.
The central financial probe agency probe was initiated on the basis of two FIRs registered by CBI against Maharshi Chokkas, Hemanshu Shah and others on the complaints filed by the Surat Income Tax department. The first FIR was registered under Sections 120B read with 467,468 and 471 of IPC and 13 (2) read with 13 (1) (d) of PC Act 1988 against Maharshi Chokkas and others, while the second one was registered under Sections 120B read with 419, 467 and 471 of IPC and 13 (2) read with 13 (1) (d) of PC Act 1988 against Maharshi Chokkas, Hemanshu Shah and unknown bank officers of Surat Peoples Co-Op Bank. Investigation under the PMLA revealed that Hemanshu, while operating the bank account of Nirav & Co held in Surat People’s Co-op Bank, Main Branch, Surat, had deposited demonetised specified bank notes (SBNs) to the extent of Rs 36.17 crore during the demonetisation period. ‘Immediately after the deposits were made, an amount of Rs.34.82 crore was transferred to the account of his firm namely Shah Maganlal Gulabchand Choksi and it was also revealed that against the transfer of the funds to Shah Maganlal Gulabchand Choksi, fake bills of bullion sales were prepared without any actual trade of bullion,’ the probe agency said.
Accused Hemanshu, in connivance with Maharshi Chokkas, used the photo and identity proof of one Nirav Rashmikant Shah of Nirav & Co and illegally utilised the bank account for depositing demonetised SBNs to the extent of Rs 36.17 crore and channelised the unaccounted black money into the banking system, the agency added. ‘Hemanshu had further utilised an amount of Rs 2.20 crore out of the illegally routed demonetised notes through the account of Nirav & Co and on identification of the proceeds of crime, the movable and immovable properties worth Rs 1.12 crore of Hemanshu R Shah have been provisionally attached under the provisions of PMLA,’ said the ED. Further investigation was under progress, the probe agency added.