ED attaches ₹481-crore assets of REI Agro in bank fraud case

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on August 01, 2019 Published on August 01, 2019

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has provisionally attached assets worth ₹ 481.04 crores under Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA) in the REI Agro Limited bank fraud case.

“This attachment worth ₹ 481.04 crore mainly comprise of the land building plant and machinery of the rice mill unit of REI Agro Limited, office space held by the controlled companies and wind farms with their land owned by the company along with fifty percent share of the immovable properties held by four companies of Fortune Group based at Kolkata,” an ED statement said.

“The investigation was initiated on the basis of FIR registered by CBI. The CBI has alleged that REI Agro Ltd and its directors, Sandip Jhunjhunwala, Sanjay Jhunjhunwala and others, availed various credit facilities/limits from various banks under consortium arrangement including UCO Bank’s Flagship corporate branch and defrauded the banks from 2013 onwards to the tune of ₹ 3871.71 crore, by diverting the funds fraudulently for the purpose other than for which the same was sanctioned,” ED said.

Investigationrevealed that REI Agro Ltd. and its directors, Sandip Jhunjhunwala and others, has diverted the funds sanctioned as working capital loan by 14 banks under consortium led by UCO Bank using different modus including trading in bogus/fake bills, investing in Varrsana Ispat Pvt. Ltd. directly and through controlled companies, setting of higher amount of Capex advances given to various shell companies by way of arbitration at a very low amount, showing higher cost of construction and by way of arranging fake purchase/sale bills among others, ED said.

Investigation also revealed that Sandip Jhunjhunwala was engaged in arranging false purchase/sales of invoices of rice and paddy through brokers/Dealers of Delhi for availing maximum working capital limits from the consortium banks and diverted working limits for capital expenditure. “He has also illegitimately diverted the funds to the tune of ₹ 600 crore (approx.) through Kolkata based shell companies to the accounts of Associates companies or companies controlled by him using banking channels, later on, part of the above amount approx. ₹ 300 crore was settled through arbitration against taking over of land valued approximately ₹ 22 crore. The accused had also arranged fake bills of Iron and Steel to the tune of ₹ 25 crore and shown it as capital expenditure but received back this amount in cash,” the ED statement said.

Earlier, ED had provisionally attached properties of REI Agro Ltd. in the form of Land located at Sonipat, district of Haryana, of Varrsana Ispat Pvt. Ltd. in the form of Machinery and Equipment’s, Land and Buildings located at Kutch district of Gujarat of Quick Connect dot com and its director located at Sainik Farm, New Delhi, totaling worth ₹ 584.73 crore.

The total attachment in this case is worth ₹ 1065.77 crore. Sandip Jhunjhunwala, Managing Director, REI Agro Ltd. was also arrested for his involvement in Money Laundering.

Published on August 01, 2019
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