Steel Businessman Accused of Rs 2,112 Crore Fraud Traced in London

first_imgThe Enforcement Directorate (ED) will attach more properties of Pramod Kumar Mittal, the former chairman of Global Steel Holdings Ltd, for allegedly swindling Rs 2,112 crore of government-owned State Trading Corporation (STC), IANS reported.The ED attached Mittal’s properties that were valued at Rs 245 crore in May 2017. “The ED will attach more properties of Mittal in the coming days,” the report said, citing a source. It added that the agency officials stumbled upon his whereabouts when they were looking for absconding jeweler Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi in the nearly $2 billion fraud case involving the Punjab National Bank. The source said, IANS reported, that Mittal is now in the United Kingdom and the agency has got hold of his address in London.Mittal, who is the younger brother of steel mogul and ArcelorMittal chairman-CEO Lakshmi Mittal, has not appeared before the agency since 2017 despite being summoned thrice. Mittal was booked in March 2017 by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for alleged default on credit repayments to the State Trading Corporation, which caused a loss of Rs 2,112 crore to it, PTI reported last year.The CBI claimed that Mittal’s company sought the assistance of STC in getting financing facility through Letters of Credit for purchase of raw materials for their plants in Philippines and Bosnia, Firstpost reported. Global Steel Holdings Ltd is registered in Isle of Man.In its FIR, the CBI had also named Lalit Sehgal, the former chief executive officer of Global Steel Philippines Inc., former STC chairman and managing director Arvind Padalai and 18 former executives of the public sector undertaking.The Firstpost report quoted CBI as satating: “As a result of revised system of payment, the associate (GSPI and GSHL) got easy money for longer period to fund their operations with no pressure to repay STC dues. Since April 2005 a total 80 Letter of Credits (LC) were opened by STC in favour of suppliers. The first LC number 5174 valued at US $7383872 was opened on 09.06.2005 and the last LC was opened on May 2010. The STC officials in conspiracy with GSPI and GSHL representatives opened fresh LCs despite the fact that outstanding amount was increasing every year due to default in payment. Due to changes in market conditions/global meltdown the plant operations of GSPI were shutdown in 2008. There was an outstanding of Rs 729 Crores as on 31st March 2009. However, ignoring the fact that outstanding amount was not being paid by the GSPI and market was very volatile, STC officials in conspiracy with GSPI representatives proceeded to make further funding in May 2009 and continued till May 2010, thus exposing STC to further financial risk.”It added: “At the time of conciliation agreement on 15th November 2011, Pramod Mittal Chairman of GSPI and GSHL gave personal guarantee and also gave an undertaking that he would not transfer, sell and mortgage his investment in JSW Ispat Steel Limited as security totaling $38,96,27,333. However, BD Majumdar, then CGM STC in conspiracy with GSPI, GSHL did not take action to securitize the securities in favour of STC. Subsequently, Pramod Mittal cheated STC as he diluted the securities by transferring/selling them without STC knowledge for which the matter is pending before the court.”Mittal failed to make payment to STC as per terms of agreement signed by them, the agency alleged. “The cheques given by GSHL and GSPI against the outstanding dues were dishonored for which the matter is pending before the court,” it added, according to the report.The ED and the CBI will coordinate to get a red corner notice issued against Mittal, the report added. A lookout circular was issued against Mittal last year, according to an ED official, reported IANS. “After the prosecution case is filed, the ED will initiate the process of issuing the red corner notice against Mittal through the Interpol,” it added, quoting a source. Related ItemsEnforcement DirectorateNirav ModiPradeep Kumar Mittallast_img