The Law Enforcement Directorate (ED) said on Sunday it had arrested a managing partner of a Hyderabad-based gemstone and jewelery business in a money laundering case linked to alleged fraud in a bank loan of Rs 67 crore.
Sanjay Agarwal was brought before a special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court in Hyderabad on February 11 and the court remanded him to 15 days in custody.
Agarwal is a managing partner of gemstones and jewelry from Ghanshyamdas, Hyderabad which is engaged in the wholesale business of gold.
He was already incarcerated in a Kolkata prison after the ED arrested him in another money laundering case related to an alleged diversion of gold intended for duty-free export to the domestic market.
The latest case, the agency said in a statement, relates to a “loan fraud case in which State Bank of India (SBI), Hyderabad suffered a loss of Rs 67 crore”. Probe found that “in 2010-2011, Agarwal fraudulently procured gold bullion from SBI by producing false bank guarantees and side letters allegedly issued by PNB and sold the gold bullion on the local market to various jewelers and small cash traders.” The money was ‘diverted’ to several other businesses started by Agarwal on behalf of his wife, brothers and employees, he alleged.
“Later, after the default of the gold loan, the SBI discovered that the bank guarantees and letters were forged. On 17.08.2011, Agarwal and his brothers Ajay and Vinay smuggled out all the gold stock and jewelry kept in their store in Abids, Hyderabad,” ED said. The stock was already mortgaged to PNB against a gold loan from the company, he said.
The CBI had also accused Agarwal and others of “fraudulently deleting gold and jewelry mortgaged to the PNB against a loan of gold from his company and thereby causing a loss of 31.97 crores of rupees to the National Bank of Punjab”.