Co-op bank fraud: ED arrests Ahmedabad-based director under money laundering charges

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has arrested the director of an Ahmedabad-based biotech company on charges of money laundering in connection with an alleged co-operative bank fraud, the agency said on Thursday.

It said Niketa Baldevbhai Dave, director of Pentium Infotech Ltd and Hiram Biotech Ltd, has been arrested under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and a local court in Ahmedabad sent her to ED custody till October 17.

The central probe agency said in a statement that Dave, another director of these firms- Pratik R Shah- and others allegedly “committed fraud of Rs 25.25 crore with the Ahmedabad Peoples Cooperative Bank Ltd (APCBL)” and were first booked by the CID-crime branch of the Gujarat Police in May, 2009.

The ED filed a criminal case of money laundering based on this FIR.

The ED claimed it probe found that “Shah and Dave, being the directors of Pentium Infotech Ltd and Hirak Biotech Ltd, opened FDOD (overdraft accounts against fixed deposits) loan accounts in APCBL and these companies defaulted on payment causing loss of Rs 25.25 crore to the bank.” “Twenty IBL accounts with Rs 50 lakh sanctioned to each account were also opened from APCBL by Shah in the name of his office staff, firms, associates, out of which Dave applied for loan for seven out of 20 firms namely S J Securities Ltd, Pioneer Mercantile Ltd, Vitale Bio Science Ltd, Satark Real Estate Ltd, Jupiter Business Ltd, Lakshya securities and Credit Holding Ltd and Arihant Jewellers,” it said.

Probe found that Shah and Dave had “passed a board resolution on February 25 authorising the latter to sign, deal, sell, transfer and dispose non-agricultural land held in the name of Hirak Biotech Ltd (located at Sachana).” “On the basis of the resolution Dave executed sale deeds in March transferring the properties of Hirak Biotech Ltd without receiving any consideration,” the ED alleged.

Dave played “an active role” in disposing of the proceeds of crime in the alleged bank fraud case and hence she was arrested, it said.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Federal staff and is auto-published from a syndicated feed.)

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