Punjab National Bank fraud case main accused Nirav Modi threatened to kill a witness, and destroyed evidence, the prosecution in his extradition hearing alleged at the second bail application in Westminster Magistrates Court on Friday. A London court rejected the bail plea of billionaire jeweller Nirav Modi on Friday after the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), which is representing India, revealed that he is accused of threatening witnesses and destroying evidence.
The court heard that Nirav had threatened Ashish Lad, a witness in the Rs 13,700-crore PNB fraud, that if he didn’t accept Rs 20 lakh and provide a false statement, he would be killed. Nirav allegedly also issued threats to witnesses in Egypt. The allegations were one of several arguments presented to the court by barrister Toby Cadman, acting on behalf of the Crown Prosecution Service (who are representing India). He told the court there was a “substantial risk” that Modi would “flee, interfere with witnesses, interfere with evidence in order,” to prevent the case against him proceeding.
“Due to the nature and seriousness of these charges, the value and resources available to him, there would be an overwhelming desire to flee the jurisdiction…and he has shown a willingness to interfere in the administration of justice to influence witnesses and destroy evidence,” the court heard. Nirav, 49, and his uncle, Mehul Choksi, are wanted in India over one of the biggest frauds in the Indian banking sector.