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PNB scam: UK court rejects Nirav Modi's plea challenging extradition to India

Under the legal guidelines, Nirav Modi as an appellant has five business days to apply for an oral consideration, giving him time until next week.

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PNB scam: UK court rejects Nirav Modi's plea challenging extradition to India
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A UK High Court on Wednesday dismissed fugitive diamond merchant Nirav Modi's application to appeal against his extradition to India. Diamantaire Nirav Modi is accused of defrauding Punjab National Bank (PNB) for around USD 2 billion (Rs 14,000 crore).

Nirav Modi had lodged an appeal in the London high court last month challenging the extradition order issued against him by the Westminster Magistrates' court. Westminster Magistrates Court's February ruling was in favour of Nirav Modi's extradition to India to face charges of fraud and money laundering. 

An oral submission by the fugitive diamond trader is still pending in the high court. Under the legal guidelines, Nirav Modi as an appellant has five business days to apply for such an oral consideration, giving him time until next week. If a renewal application is made, it will be listed before a High Court judge for a hearing. It is understood that Nirav Modi plans to make such an application.

If the oral submission is rejected, Nirav Modi would have exhausted all of his legal options in the UK. However, he could still approach the European Human Rights Court and appeal against the extradition order.

UK home secretary Priti Patel had ordered on April 15 of this year that Nirav Modi be extradited to India. He has been lodged at the Wandsworth prison in London since his arrest on March 19, 2019.

In his ruling in February, District Judge Sam Goozee concluded that the diamond merchant has a case to answer before the Indian courts and that the bars to extradition under UK law do not apply in his case.

Nirav Modi case in India

Nirav Modi is the subject of two sets of criminal proceedings in India - one with CBI and another with the Enforcement Directorate. 

CBI case is related to a large-scale fraud upon PNB through the fraudulent obtaining of letters of undertaking (LoUs) or loan agreements.

The ED case against Nirav Modi is related to the laundering of the proceeds of that fraud.

He also faces two additional charges added to the CBI case - one of 'causing the disappearance of evidence'.

The second charge is of intimidating witnesses or 'criminal intimidation to cause death'.

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