AgustaWestland chopper case: Special court sends Christian Michel to five-day CBI custody

Christian Michel James. Photograph:( PTI )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Dec 05, 2018, 03.48 PM (IST)

The Patiala House court on Wednesday granted the investigating agency five-day custody of Christian Michel, the alleged middleman in the Rs 3,600-crore AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal.

Michel was produced before special CBI Judge Arvind Kumar in Patiala House Court after initial rounds of questioning by CBI.

CBI had sought for his remand to "confront him with some important documents" in the chopper case.

During questioning by CBI, Christian Michel complained of anxiety after which he was given medicine.

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He was extradited to India from Dubai on Tuesday.

Michel, 54, landed at the Indira Gandhi International Airport on a Gulfstream jet at 10.35 pm Tuesday night after which he was arrested by the CBI in connection with the case. 

After the immigration procedure, he was taken to the CBI headquarters for interrogation at south Delhi's Lodhi Road area.

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Michel is one of the three middlemen being probed in the case, besides Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa, by the ED and the CBI. Both the agencies have notified an Interpol red corner notice (RCN) against him after the court issued a non-bailable warrant against him.

However, Michel had denied the charges.

The Rs 3,600 crore AgustaWestland VIP helicopter deal, finalised during the previous government of Manmohan Singh, had got mired in allegations of kickbacks. 

Former Air Chief SP Tyagi is also an accused in the case along with some others. 

According to the Enforcement Directorate charge sheet filed in a court here two years back, Michel had received kickbacks to the tune of 30 million Euros from AgustaWestland for the deal involving a purchase of 12 VIP helicopters. 

The deal, signed in 2007, was scrapped in 2013 following the bribery allegations.

(With inputs from agencies)

Story highlights

The Rs 3,600 crore AgustaWestland VIP helicopter deal, finalised during the previous government of Manmohan Singh, had got mired in allegations of kickbacks.