Vivo PMLA case: ED seeks 10-day extension of accused’s custody

 The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday sought extension of the custody of four people arrested in a money laundering case against Chinese smart phone maker Vivo, including the managing director of Lava International mobile company and a Chinese national, by 10 days.

Additional Sessions Judge Devender Kumar Jangala had on October 10 sent the accused to ED’s custody for three days.

The four accused- Hari Om Rai, the MD of Lava International company, Chinese national Guangwen alias Andrew Kuang, and Chartered Accountants Nitin Garg and Rajan Malik- were produced in the court on Friday on expiry of their custody.

The prosecution sought extension of their custody so they could be interrogated further. It said they had to be confronted with 13 witnesses and digital data from multiple devices had to be extracted.

The defence counsel opposed the agency’s plea, claiming the ED was engaging in “flagrant violation of procedures”.

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The court is expected to pass an order on ED’s application for extension of custody shortly.

The four accused were taken into custody under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

The agency had raided the company and individuals linked to it in July last year, claiming to have busted a major money laundering racket involving Chinese nationals and multiple Indian companies.

The ED had then alleged that a whopping Rs 62,476 crore was “illegally” transferred by Vivo to China in order to avoid payment of taxes in India.

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