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Delhi HC to hear on Dec 6 plea by Sukesh Chandrasekhar seeking quashing of money laundering case

New Delhi, Dec 4 (PTI) The Delhi High Court Monday said it will hear on December 6 a plea by alleged conman Sukesh Chandrasekhar seeking quashing of a case lodged against him by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) under the anti-money laundering law in connection with the 2017 Election Commission bribery matter.

Chandrasekhar was alleged to have taken money from former AIADMK leader TTV Dhinakaran in order to secure for the VK Sasikala faction the party’s ‘two leaves’ symbol for contesting a by-poll in Tamil Nadu.

Justice Amit Sharma, before whom the matter came up for hearing, transferred it to the bench dealing with cases involving legislators.

Chandrasekhar sought quashing of the Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR) and prosecution complaint (charge sheet) in the money laundering case. He also sought a direction to the trial court to not proceed with the criminal case pending before it.

At the outset, the counsel representing the ED contended that a petition filed by Chandrasekhar with similar prayers is already pending in the high court.

Responding to him, Chandrasekhar’s counsel said his earlier plea challenged the framing of charges against him.

The petition said the money laundering case is at the stage of prosecution evidence and trial will be concluded soon. However, according to the settled principle of law with respect to the PMLA, a person cannot be convicted of money laundering if they have been acquitted in the criminal case, that is, the predicate offence, or the case has been quashed.

The petition said the trial arising out of the scheduled or predicate offence is at a halt due to the stay granted by the Delhi High Court and the Supreme Court, and that there is every possibility that the same may be quashed and set aside resulting in the whole process getting terminated.

The plea alleged the investigation and the trial proceedings in the ED case are being conducted in total violation of the settled principles of law, are highly arbitrary and whimsical in nature, and simply intended to harass and cause grave prejudice to the petitioner.

“On bare perusal of the prosecution complaint filed by the respondent (ED), it can be clearly seen that the petitioner is not even involved in the generation of money laundering and, in fact, it is TTV Dhinakaran and his associates who were actually involved in the process of money laundering….,” it alleged.

The money laundering probe against Chandrasekhar has arisen from a 2017 Delhi police case which alleged he took money from former AIADMK leader TTV Dhinakaran to bribe Election Commission officials to secure the party’s ‘two leaves’ symbol for the VK Sasikala faction in a by-election to the R K Nagar assembly seat in Tamil Nadu.

In 2019, the high court had stayed the trial against Dhinakaran and Chandrasekhar in the bribery case.

The trial court had framed charges against Chandrasekhar in the money laundering case probed by the ED in October last year after he was arrested earlier that year while he was in jail in connection with another case.

Chandrasekhar is also facing proceedings for allegedly cheating and extorting money from some prominent people, including individuals like former Fortis Healthcare promoter Shivinder Mohan Singh’s wife Aditi Singh. PTI SKV SKV SK

This report is auto-generated from PTI news service. ThePrint holds no responsibility for its content.

Source: The Print

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