Mehul Choksi planned escape; relocated ‘dummy’ directors to Thailand before fleeing India


Mehul Choksi had his escape planned well in advance fearing an investigation by authorities against him. The fugitive diamantaire, who fled India to seek refuge in the Caribbean island nation of Antigua & Barbuda islands in 2018, had held meetings with ‘dummy directors’ of his supplier companies based in Hong Kong as far back as 2017, alerting them of potential investigation against them, according to an Economic Times report.

The businessman told the directors of the companies that they might have to face enquiries by the Enforcement Directorate (ED). By the time Choksi bid adieu to India, the directors had been ‘relocated’ to Bangkok to dodge authorities, according to the CBI supplementary chargesheet against 12 individuals. CBI named Choksi, Vipul Chitalia, the then vice president – banking operations, Gitanjali Group, and former senior officials of PNB, the report added.

The 63-year-old, currently on trial in Dominica for gaining illegal entry, had met the dummy directors in Hong Kong in 2017 in Singapore and alerted them of problems in India and how it could lead to an ED investigation against them as well. “This shows that Choksi had prior knowledge about the impending criminal proceedings,” the CBI chargesheet said, according to the business daily. He also told the directors to apply for Thailand visas as operations in Singapore would be closed.

The chargesheet alleged that Chitalia was given the job of arranging work permits for Abbeycrest (Thailand) Ltd., Bangkok, a firm that was also controlled by Choksi. It further added that Choksi instructed the directors not to visit India as they might be probed.

The investigation agency is fighting for Choksi’s extradition in a Dominica court. He is under detention in the island nation, where he landed after mysteriously disappearing from neighbouring Antigua on May 23. The economic offender, in a complaint later, alleged that he was kidnapped by several men and siphoned off to Dominica on May 23 on a boat after he went to meet his friend Barbara Jarabica—who he later accused of being part of a ploy to smuggle him out of the country. In Antigua, Choksi, who has an Interpol notice against him, is protected against extradition to India as he holds citizenship.

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  1. IF this stuff is true, it sounds like we’re deal with a real scamp!!!! The courts in India will have to sort it out. No matter what papers he hold here, 99.% of the population, red and blue, will likely agree he is NO Antiguan!!!!! Time for Dominica to turn him over to interpol and the Indian authorities. They will know what to do with this case. They will treat him with the dignity he deserves(?). No judgements from me. I simply want to see him have his day in court, and let the Indian judges decide. His health can’t take much more of this. It’s time to go home.

  2. Look at the scamp, that UPP supporting. Surprised? A convicted killer in their ranks and so also a convicted pedophile (the magic man) is being held close. This man based on the info above committed fraud when he applied for citizenship here. He should have disclosed the fact that he was being investigated in India. This explains why our courts so far have ruled against this scammer. Let India have him I say, they will ensure he gets what he deserves.

  3. Gaston Browne, Molwyn Joseph, Melford Nicholas, Chet Green, Cutie Benjamin, Ray John, Mehul Choksi, what do they all have in common?

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