The Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Mumbai Police Crime Branch on Monday filed its first chargesheet against the five accused arrested in the Rs 5,600 crore alleged National Spot Exchange Limited (NSEL) scam.
Crime Branch chief Himanshu Roy said that the chargesheet was filed against NSEL officials Amit Mukherjee, Jai Bahukhandi and Anjani Sinha, as well as top borrowers Nilesh Patel and Arunkumar Sharma in the designated Maharashtra Protection of Interests of Depositors (MPID) Act court.
The chargesheet, which runs into 9,000 pages, charges the accused for criminal breach of trust, forgery and cheating under various sections of the Indian Penal Code along with Sections 3 and 4 of the MPID Act, which empowers the EOW to seize and liquidate the assets of the accused.
Mukherjee was assistant vice president for business development, Bahukandi, the assistant vice president for warehousing, and Sinha, the managing director and chief executive officer at NSEL.
“This is only the first chargesheet in the case against the five accused who are currently in judicial custody, and we have obtained permission from the court to conduct further investigations into the case under section 173 (8) of the Criminal Procedure Code. The chargseheet includes properties, documents and other articles seized from the accused as well as statements of 297 witnesses,” said Roy.
According to the chargesheet, Mukherjee, responsible for business development, is alleged to have introduced most of the accused borrowers as members and arranged loan facilities for them under the guise of trade facilities, and is alleged to have received Rs 12 crore in kickbacks from the borrowers.
“Mukherjee looked for non performing assets who had been turned down for loans by banks, and would lend money to them. He has basically introduced those people as members who did not fit the criterion for being lent money,” Roy said.
Bahukhandi, who handled stock, is alleged to have created a web of false stocks by way of bogus warehouse receipts, and received Rs 5 crore in kickbacks in the process.
The basic contention of case is that the investments made through the NSEL were not being backed up with goods of equal value.
Of the 62 of the NSEL’s warehouses that the EOW searched during its investigation, 30 were totally empty and 17 were bogus, while the remaining warehouses contained only a small amount of goods.
Sinha is considered one of the brains behind the scam and allegedly arranged for long term