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HC Directs ED To Not Take Coercive Action Against Jet Airways Founder Naresh Goyal Till 31 Jan

The Goyals and others are accused of defrauding a local travel agency, according to the Mumbai police FIR

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Naresh Goyal, the founder of Jet Airways, and his wife Anita Goyal are being investigated for money laundering case and the Bombay High Court has ordered the Enforcement Directorate (ED)  to not take any "coercive steps" until 31 January.

The couple received temporary relief last week from a division bench of Justices Revati Mohite Dere and P K Chavan. On Tuesday, the entire order was available. The couple is pleading the judge to dismiss the Enforcement Case Information Record (ECIR), a report that is akin to a First Information Report (FIR).

The agency had taken notice of a Mumbai police FIR in 2020 and then had filed a criminal case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) against the Goyals and others.

The Goyals and others are accused of defrauding a local travel agency, according to the Mumbai police FIR.

Senior attorneys Ravi Kadam and Abad Ponda, who were hired to represent the Goyals, informed the court that the ECIR does not constitute a "predicate offence," as required under the PMLA.

They claimed that the Mumbai police had issued a closure report, in which it was stated that the criminal case against the Goyals lacked merit and that the conflict appeared to be of a civil character.

A metropolitan magistrate had accepted the closure report. The couple's attorneys informed the HC that the protest petition filed by ED (before the sessions court) had been denied and that the Bombay High Court and the Supreme Court had both upheld the aforementioned order.

The ED was represented by attorney Shreeram Shirsat, who asked for more time to respond to the petitions. The couple was given interim respite after the judge deferred the case until  31 January.

The HC ordered the ED to refrain from using coercion against the petitioners (Goyals) in the ECIR until the next hearing date.

Naresh Goyal owned Jet Airways in its previous incarnation and operated its final flight on 17 April, 2019. 

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jet airways naresh goyal money laundering