ED arrests mastermind of bank fraud case who floated 485 companies, siphoned Rs 2,600 crore

ED arrests mastermind of bank fraud case who floated 485 companies, siphoned Rs 2,600 crore
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The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Wednesday arrested the director and promoter of a Mumbai-based firm in connection with one of the largest bank fraud cases in the country.

Officials said the agency arrested Vijay M Choudhary late yesterday in Mumbai under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

Choudhary is the director and main controller of Ms Zoom Developers Private Limited (ZDPL) and was wanted by the ED in this case, where it is alleged that the firm and its controllers cheated multiple banks to the tune of Rs 2,650 crore.

The company owes the amount to a consortium of 25 banks, led by Punjab National Bank. According to ED, Choudhary and the firm’s Executive Director Sharad Kabra requested these banks to issue guarantees to foreign banks on the basis of fictitious contracts.

Choudhary, who also defaulted on a Rs 966 crore bank loan, is expected to be produced by ED officials in a court in Indore today. Zoom Developers operates from Indore and Mumbai.

The ED had booked a criminal case under PMLA based on an FIR by CBI. It had also attached 1,280 acres of land in California, USA in this case in July, 2015. This is the first time the agency attached property located abroad.

Choudhary, who is alleged to have floated 485 companies in his or his associates names to siphon off the funds, has been called the “mastermind” of this fraud case by the ED.

The ED has attached assets worth Rs 130 crore in this case till now.

The CBI first suspected loan fraud by ZDPL back in 2011.

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