New Delhi: The Supreme Court rejected the bail plea of Christian Michel, an accused in the AgustaWestland VVIP helicopter scam case.
Michel approached the Supreme Court seeking bail in the cases registered by the CBI and the ED in connection with the helicopter scam.
FIRs were registered in 2013 in eight incidents from 2004 to 2013. The lawyer appearing for Michelle told the court that Michelle was deported from Dubai in 2018 and the case has been pending for four years.
The lawyer also said that Michel faces a maximum term of five years in prison for the alleged offenses. The lawyer also told the court that the trial court had granted bail to several accused except Michel.
The Supreme Court had earlier asked the lawyers of Michel and ASG to submit a note on the matter.
Earlier, the Supreme Court had been informed that the ED had opposed Michel’s bail plea and had tried to hand over confidential documents to his lawyer during the case.
The case is still under investigation and the investigation requires the collection of several crucial documents from across jurisdictions, hence it is strongly suspected that there may be attempts to tamper with witnesses or evidence and obstruct judicial proceedings.
The investigating agency had told the bench that Michel’s role in the scam was clear and money laundering charges against him. Michelle had challenged the Delhi High Court’s March 11 order refusing to grant her bail in the Supreme Court.
Earlier, the trial court had rejected his bail plea and expressed displeasure with the letter sent to the British High Commission, saying it could take into account Michel’s health and two-and-a-half-year pre-trial detention.
Michel is now in judicial custody. On January 31, 2019, Dubai-based businessman Rajeev Saxena was extradited to India on charges of a Rs 3,600 crore scam related to the purchase of 12 VVIP helicopters from AgustaWestland.