AgustaWestland middleman Christian Michel being extradited to India

AgustaWestland middleman Christian Michel being extradited to India

The UAE government had cleared the extradition of 57-year-old Michel after his appeal against the move was turned down by a court there.

In the aforesaid manner, he was updating/informing the management of Finmeccanica and AgustaWestland namely Giuseppe Orsi and Bruno Spagnolini and others about his efforts in India for securing supply contract of VVIP Helicopters.

His alleged involvement in the chopper deal surfaced in 2012 as a middleman for swinging the deal in favour of AgustaWestland and for making illegal payment of commissions or kickbacks to the Indian authorities, CBI spokesperson Abhishek Dayal said. There are other players who are accused in the bribery case including Guido Haschke, Carlo Gerosa and Tyagi brothers (former Indian Air Force chief SP Tyagi and his three cousins Sandeep, Sanjeev and Rajiv) but no one knows the secrets of shady dealing better than Michel, who was literally born into arms dealing.

In a big victory for the Modi government, the UAE has chose to extradite AgustaWestland scam accused Christian Michel.

Surjewala alleged the statement made by Michel's advocate Rosemary Patrizi Dos Anjos after his detention in July had "clearly brought out" that the Modi government and its agencies were forcing him to sign a false confessional statement naming UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi in return for complete exoneration from any charge whatsoever in the case. He is likely to be produced before a Delhi court on December 5. Michel also allegedly paid off influential people in India, who helped reject Russian and American choppers.

Meanwhile, it is reported that Michel was questioned at the CBI headquarters for most parts of Tuesday night and Wednesday morning and that he would be produced in Patiala House Court later in the day.

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According to CBI officials, the chase to nab Michel started in 2014 and in September 2015, a non-bailable arrest warrant was issued against him.

The money was nothing but "kickbacks" paid by the firm to execute the 12 helicopter deal in favour of the firm in "guise of" genuine transactions for performing multiple work contracts in the country, according to the chargesheet. Months later on 1 September 2017, a charge sheet was filed against him and the trial court took cognizance of the offences on 11 October 2017.

Both the CBI and the ED had notified an Interpol red corner notice against him.

In January, the ED had lodged a request with the UAE authorities for extraditing James. He was allegedly also in touch with officials from the PMO, SPG, CVC and defence ministry.

Michel, who is a citizen of United Kingdom, was brought to India late Tuesday night following his extradition by the UAE in connection with the case.

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