VVIP chopper case: Delhi HC denies bail to alleged middleman Christian Michel
The Delhi High Court on Friday turned down the bail applications filed by Christian James Michel, the alleged middleman in the Rs 3,600 crore AgustaWestland VVIP chopper scam.
New Delhi, March 11 (IANS) The Delhi High Court on Friday turned down the bail applications filed by Christian James Michel, the alleged middleman in the Rs 3,600 crore AgustaWestland VVIP chopper scam.
Justice Manoj Ohri pronounced the order after hearing the submissions by Michel's counsel Aljo K. Joseph, CBI's counsel D.P. Singh and Additional Solicitor General S.V. Raju for the ED. A detailed order copy is expected to be made available later in the day.
Michel, a British citizen, was extradited to India on December 5, 2018 from the UAE. On his arrival in India, he was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and days later, arrested by the financial probe agency, the Enforcement Directorate. Since then, he has been lodged in judicial custody at Tihar Jail. Various courts have rejected the bail petition of Michel in a number of occasions.
Michel had recently sought bail in connection with the cases registered against him by the CBI and the ED on the grounds that the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) concluded his detention was arbitrary.
In his petition, James had argued that his extradition from the UAE to India was a quid pro quo for Indian authorities sending back Dubai's Princess Latifa.
On September 19, 2020 the CBI had filed a supplementary charge sheet against 15 accused, including Michel and accused-turned-approver Rajiv Saxena, in connection with the alleged corruption in the Rs 3,600 crore AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal.
The CBI had earlier filed a charge sheet in this case on September 1, 2017 against then IAF chief S.P. Tyagi and 11 other accused.
On January 1, 2014, India cancelled the contract with Finmeccanica's British subsidiary AgustaWestland for supplying 12 AW-101 VVIP choppers to the IAF over alleged breach of contractual obligations and on charges of paying kickbacks amounting to Rs 423 crore.