AgustaWestland Case: Special CBI Court Dismisses Christian Michel’s Bail Plea In Both CBI & ED Cases

| February 16 , 2019 , 17:20 IST

Delhi's Patiala House Court on Saturday dismissed the bail plea of Christian Michel, arrested in connection with an alleged scam in the Rs 3,600-crore AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal.

Special judge Arvind Kumar rejected Michel's plea in the cases filed by the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate.

Opposing the plea, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) said since Michel is close to influential people, he could leave the country on bail, tamper with the evidence, influence the witnesses.

On January 5, Michel was sent to judicial custody in the ED case. He is also lodged in judicial custody in the CBI case related to the scam. Under the now-scrapped deal with AgustaWestland, a subsidiary of Italian defense group Leonardo, formerly Finmeccanica, India agreed to buy 12 helicopters for ferrying VVIPs. The chopper deal was inked in February 2010 and scrapped four years later over allegations that bribes had exchanged hands.

Michel, extradited from Dubai, was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate on December 22 last year.

Michel is among the three alleged middlemen being probed in the case by the ED and the CBI. The others are Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa.

On Thursday, the court granted seven-day interim bail to Rajiv Saxena, another accused in the AgustaWestland chopper scam. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had named Saxena as the “key money launderer” in the scam.