Vijay Mallya Used IDBI Loan For Kingfisher Airlines To Fund Formula 1 Race Team Too', Alleges Enforcement Directorate

Officials hope the Enforcement Directorate charge-sheet would strengthen the extradition request sent to UK on the basis of the CBI's probe.

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Vijay Mallya Used IDBI Loan For Kingfisher Airlines To Fund Formula 1 Race Team Too', Alleges Enforcement Directorate

Enforcement Directorate accuses Vijay Mallya of laundering a big chunk of the 900 crore IDBI loan.


NEW DELHI:  Business tycoon Vijay Mallya was "the prime mover in the plot" to launder a big chunk of the 900 crore-bank loan taken to keep Kingfisher Airlines flying in 2009 and had used part of the IDBI bank loan to even fund the Force India Formula 1 Team, the Enforcement Directorate has alleged in charges filed in a Mumbai court on Wednesday.

The 57-page complaint listing money laundering allegations against Mr Mallya come just a day after a UK Court took up India's request for the liquor baron's extradition. The case was tentatively listed for a hearing this year-end because the court wasn't sure if the required documents would be available sooner. "Are Indians normally very prompt in their responses," Chief Magistrate Emma Louise Arbuthnot had asked at Tuesday's hearing.

Officials hope the ED charge-sheet would strengthen the extradition request based on the CBI's case. In January this year, the CBI had arrested top IDBI officials including the bank's former chief Yogesh Aggarwal and A Raghunathan of the now-defunct airline.

In its charge-sheet, the directorate that probes financial crimes alleged nearly 417 crores of the 900 crores had been diverted by Mr Mallya through a web of companies to firms in Singapore, Mauritius and Cayman Islands. Somme of the money also went to fund the Formula 1 team that Mr Mallya promoted.

The agency claimed that no supporting documents had been produced so far to show if there was an agreement between Kingfisher Airlines and other companies for transfer of funds.

Mr Mallya, chief of the defunct Kingfisher Airlines, is wanted in India for defaulting on loans to the tune of over  9,000 crores ($1.4 billion). The 61-year-old business tycoon, who was  arrested by the UK police in April following India's request for extradition, has repeatedly dismissed the charges against him. "I have not eluded any court. I have no expectations, listen to what court says," Mr Mallya said outside the extradition court, insisting that he had "enough evidence" to prove his case.


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