FUGITIVE ECONOMIC OFFENDER
What’s in news?
Nirav Modi was declared as a fugitive economic offender.
- Nirav Modi, a diamond merchant was declared as a fugitive economic offender under the “Fugitive Economic Offenders Act by a special PMLA” court in Mumbai.
- The offender was announced as this, on a plea of the Enforcement Directorate.
- With this announcement, the Enforcement Directorate can begin confiscating his properties in India, the UK and UAE after the court issued an order.
- For this purpose, the list of Modi’s properties both in India and abroad will be heard by the court on December 10.
- The properties are being confiscate to expedite the recovery of losses incurred by banks and other entities.
- After Vijay Mallaya, he is the second person to be declared as a fugitive economic offender.
Nirav Modi accused in:
- Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi are the prime accused in the PNB fraud case, related to alleged fraudulent issuance of Letters of Undertaking that caused a loss of over 2 billion dollars to the public sector bank.
- He was arrested in London in March this year.
Data to know:
Who is an Economic Offender?
- An individual who has committed some specified offence(s) involving an amount of one hundred crore rupees or more and has absconded from India or refused to come back to India to avoid or face criminal prosecution in India.
- Such a person can be declared as a Fugitive Economic Offender by a ‘Special Court’ set up under the Prevention of Money-laundering Act (PMLA), 2002.
- After such declaration, the enforcement agencies can confiscate the belonging (includes benami property) properties of that offender.
Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2018:
- An Act of the Parliament of India that seeks to confiscate properties and assets of economic offenders that evade prosecution by remaining outside the jurisdiction of Indian courts.
- The value of money involved of more than Rs 100 crores.
United Nations Convention against Corruption:
- Adopted in: 2003
- Effective since: 2005
- The only legally binding universal anti-corruption instrument.
- India ratified the agreement in 2011.
- Focus areas: The five main areas of the agreement are
- Preventive measures
- Criminalization and law enforcement
- International cooperation
- Asset recovery
- Technical assistance and information exchange.
Links to note: