In the case of the Special Court for the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) in Kochi on Wednesday, the Compliance Directorate (ED) searching the money trail behind Kerala gold smuggling through the diplomatic channel filed a complaint (charge sheet) against three accused persons. The indictment sheet was filed against Sarith PS, Swapna Suresh, and Sandeep Nair, the three main defendants in the case.
“It is clear from the PMLA investigation and evidence gathered so far that the accused have committed a Money Laundering crime as specified in Section 3 and are liable to be charged and punished in compliance with Section 4 of the PMLA,” said the bill of indictment.
The fee sheet comprised 303 pages of which 23 pages were connected to the results of the ED as part of the survey. Similarly, 19 collections of records used as evidence are now used in the prosecution sheet, which itself is 276 pages long.
According to ED reports, it demanded permission to conduct a further investigation and to file a supplementary charge sheet against the accused at a later date. The new indictment sheet was submitted in order to prohibit the suspects from using mandatory bail by failing to file it within 60 days of their conviction. “The 60 days have come to an end after the arrest of three suspected people. Nevertheless, we will appeal at the court to prohibit them from seeking mandatory bail as we have already lodged an indictment,” said ED sources.
Swapna addressed the court demanding constitutional bail as 60 days had elapsed since her detention. Her prosecutor, Geo Paul, told the court that it had been more than 70 days since her detention and that she was entitled to get a parole. The application was made by the court when its appeal was taken into account on Wednesday. However, the court has agreed to hear ED before reaching a decision. The complaint was forwarded to Friday for a hearing.
Swapna was given bail by the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate (Economic Offences) in the case under investigation by Customs. She has asked the NIA court for bail in the NIA case in which she was charged with terrorism.