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ED to question six held in illegal forex transfer case

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Six people arrested here on Tuesday in a joint operation by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the CBI in connection with an ongoing probe into an illegal forex transfer by Bank of Baroda were sent in four-day ED custody.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) arrested four people alleged to be middlemen who facilitated the illegal forex transfer abroad, while the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested the other two who are bank employees, officials said.

After they were presented before Metropolitan Magistrate Viplav Dabas, ED’s counsel N.K. Matta sought 14-day police custody of the accused to unearth the conspiracy. He said their questioning was required to identify the beneficiaries of forex transactions and to recover the money.

However, the court allowed the ED to quiz the accused till October 17.

The case pertains to transfer of over Rs.6,172 crore in foreign exchange through a Bank of Baroda branch to Hong Kong.

The money was transferred through 59 bank accounts to companies in Hong Kong and Dubai for fake import and export businesses.

“A search revealed that addresses given by at least 50 companies for bank records were fake,” a CBI official told IANS.

“Interrogation of bank officials revealed that some employees acted as middlemen for these companies,” he added.

Those arrested by the CBI are Bank of Baroda’s Ashok Vihar branch head and assistant general manager Suresh Kumar Garg and foreign exchange unit head Jainis Dubey, the official said.

Those arrested by the ED are Kamal Kalra, Chandan Bhatia, Gurucharan Singh and Sanjay Aggarwal, who were allegedly involved in the transaction of 15 accounts.

Kalra allegedly handled business for a dozen companies. According to officers, during his questioning, he said he worked in the forex department of HDFC Bank and used to get a commission.

Over the past few days, the ED and the CBI conducted joint raids to crack the case.

(IANS)