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Enforcement Directorate arrests defence agent in VVIP choppers case

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New Delhi   : The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had arrested a defence agent from Delhi in the Rs 3,600-crore VVIP choppers deal case, officials said on Tuesday.

They said Sushen Mohan Gupta was arrested on Monday night by agency sleuths under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

Gupta, they said, had allegedly dealt in defence deals, including the AgustaWestland helicopters deal. He will be produced before a special PMLA court here on Tuesday.

Lawyer Gautam Khaitan and alleged British middleman Christian Michel were earlier arrested by the ED in the case.

The ED officials said Gupta’s role in the case came to light on the basis of disclosures made by Rajiv Saxena, who has recently turned approver in the case after he was deported from the UAE and arrested by the ED here.

It is suspected that Gupta had in his possession some payment details in the purchase of VVIP choppers and the link is to be unravelled, they said. He had, hence, been arrested, they said.

On January 1, 2014, India scrapped the contract with Finmeccanica’s British subsidiary AgustaWestland for supplying 12 AW-101 VVIP choppers to the Indian Air Force (IAF) over alleged breach of contractual obligations and charges of paying kickbacks of Rs 423 crore by it for securing the deal.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the ED have filed multiple chargesheets in the case and named former IAF chief SP Tyagi and his family members as accused besides others. PTI

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