By Caribbean News Now contributor
ST JOHN’S, Antigua — Interpol has issued a Red Notice against fugitive billionaire and economic citizen of Antigua and Barbuda, Mehul Choksi, who is accused of defrauding state-run Punjab National Bank to the tune of $1.8 billion in alleged collusion with his nephew Nirav Modi, the Economic Times of India reported on Thursday.
Interpol issued the notice against Choksi on Wednesday on the request of India’s premier investigative agency, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), rejecting his contentions of being persecuted by Indian agencies and the case being political in nature.
“The Interpol has issued a Red Corner Notice against Mehul Choksi on the request of the CBI,” CBI spokesperson Abhishek Dayal said.
A Red Notice is equivalent to an international arrest warrant, when Interpol asks its member countries to arrest or detain a fugitive, wanted by another member country, if he is detected in their respective jurisdictions.
Choksi, 59, managing director of Gitanjali Gems Ltd, fled India in January this year along with his nephew Nirav Modi, his wife Ami Modi and brother Nishal Modi.
Choksi is currently resident in Antigua and Barbuda and has sued the government there in an apparent attempt to pre-empt consideration of an extradition request made by Indian authorities. However, his application was rejected by the court on Wednesday.