Roseau, Dominica: Mehul Choksi, Indian origin fugitive businessman, has been in Dominican police custody for over a month now. His highly-paid lawyers could not get him bailed out of the Caribbean island as the court had cited him as a “flight risk”.
According to media reports, Chetan Chinubhai Choksi, along with his brother Mehul Choksi signed a contract for renting a house for over three months to back their bail application. The lawyer of Mehul Choksi has filed an affidavit in the court stating that he would present himself in front of the court when required and would not make another escape from Dominica.
During this period, Mehul Choksi attempted to use the biggest power he possesses, “money”. He offered money to Dominican police officers and even doctors at the Dominica-China friendship hospital in Roseau for luxurious treatment. According to the media, he has already spent millions of dollars to run away from his extradition in both legitimate and illegitimate ways.
It appears after refusal for a premium or exclusive accommodation and a bribe from doctors, Mehul Choksi’s lawyers appealed for a private doctor, stating that he needs special care, which the public doctors at Dominica-China friendship hospital could not facilitate
, but the court also refused the application. This comes after he made an attempt to bribe doctors at the hospital to provide him with lavish accommodation.
His lawyers claim that their client requires an exceptional neurologist for the most advanced treatment, and he must be deported to Antigua and Barbuda. Their hollow pretences were uncovered because even Antiguan medical infrastructure is not well-equipped to treat severe neurology related difficulties that his lawyers are claiming.
Sources told that throughout his stay in Antigua and Barbuda, Mehul Choksi was a person who promoted corruption, bribery and illegal routes of getting things done. Recently, Choksi’s lawyer complained that the Caribbean is promoting corruption, but the fact is that people like Mehul Choksi who raise money through illegal means are the ones who try to excel using corrupt money.
The Caribbean has a long and strong history of comradery, and no person faces unlawful actions in the whole region. Choksi and his battalion of lawyers are defaming the region by stating that why the Caribbean authorities are not supporting a criminal who trespassed Dominica while making an escape from his extradition.
Local media also reported that Mehul Choksi’s brother Chetan Chinubhai Choksi also bribed the oppositions of Dominica and Antigua and Barbuda following the arrest of Choksi. It was said that Opposition Leader of Dominica, Lennox Linton, took a bribe of about $200,000 from Chetan Choksi and a guarantee of election funding to support his brother’s case in the Parliament. Notably, Linton also joined Chetan Choksi in Mehul Choksi’s hearing in the Dominican High Court of Justice in Roseau. However, Lennox Linton denied to allegations.
Moreover, Choksi’s London based lawyer Michael Polak is also under the lens of legal authorities of the UK on the allegations of fabricating evidence of law and spreading false statements. A complaint submitted to Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) and Bar Standards Board (BSB) states that barrister Polak failed to carry out the process of KYC (know your customer) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) on his client
It is alleged that Polak received money that had no source of funds and was transferred to him through illegal gateways.
A person who is a declared criminal, money launderer and corrupt is being displayed as a victim by lawyers who wear $2,000 suits and enjoys a lavish lifestyle all because of their criminalistic clients who loot from the poor people’s money.
The whole scene was storyboarded first by Mehul Choksi then his lawyers and PR agencies fuelled the process. Notably, Choksi can never agree that he intentionally left Antigua and Barbuda because he is on bail from two cases related to his extradition and revocation of his citizenship. In case, Choksi is found guilty of leaving the country without due process, he would certainly end up in Antiguan jail and might also be extradited to India sooner than normal.
Mehul Choksi is an Indian fugitive who is accused of defrauding the country’s second-biggest public lender. As per Indian authorities, Choksi conspired with staff members of Punjab National Bank (PNB) Brady House branch, Mumbai. His retail company Geetanjali Jewellers had more than 4,000 stores across India, and Choksi took huge loans on the companies name by illicit means.
He had been running from getting captured by the top Indian agencies, including the Chief Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Directorate of Enforcement (ED). In 2017, Choksi fled India to Antigua and Barbuda, where he acquired citizenship through the Caribbean country’s “Citizenship by Investment Programme”. Choksi had been residing in Jolly Harbour Antigua since then; however, on May 23, 2021, his wife Priti reported him missing at the St John’s police station.
Two days after going missing, Mehul Choksi was discovered on a beach on the neighbouring island of Dominica. Police officials reported that he entered the country illegally. His close ally Govin told media that Mehul Choksi absconded from Antigua and Barbuda to Cuba, where he owns a safe house.
It was later revealed by the media that Mehul Choksi was escaping from extradition, which was likely in November 2021, as per sources. He is now in the custody of the Dominican police, where the court has denied him bail three times in a row. While there are facts proving that he escaped willingly, his lawyers continue to claim that their client was forcefully abducted by Antigua and Indian authorities.
Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda Gaston Browne dismissed the allegations of abduction, stating that no “conclusive evidence” proves that Mehul Choksi was kidnapped.