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  • Sukesh Chandrasekhar extortion: Delhi Police may quiz 5 celebrities – Times of India

 November 17

by Carolina

Sukesh Chandrasekhar (File photo)

NEW DELHI: Delhi Police is likely to question around five Bollywood celebrities in connection with their probe in the case of extortion of Rs 200 crore by high-profile conman Sukesh Chandrasekhar, reports Rajshekhar Jha. Sukesh and his associates, including his wife Leena Maria Paul, have claimed that a part of the proceeds of crime were shared with these actors and expensive gifts like cars given to them. The police seek to verify these allegations, officials said.

The Bollywood contacts, sources said, were arranged by Leena Paul, a former model and actress, who has also been arrested in the case along with Sukesh. The Enforcement Directorate has already questioned a couple of actors in the case.

The Enforcement Directorate has already questioned a couple of actors, including Jacqueline Fernandes and Nora Fatehi in the case. Both actors have denied having any connection with Sukesh Chandrasekhar.

Delhi Police recently filed a chargesheet against Chandrasekhar, Paul and other associates under MCOCA and IPC detailing how Sukesh carried out the biggest-ever extortion bid in Delhi – which was first reported by TOI – and how he was busted. Chandrasekhar, the chargesheet says, had zeroed down on spouses of the former promoters of Ranbaxy, Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh, after being informed in Tihar Jail that the Singhs were apparently desperate to get out of prison. At the time he received this information, he was having casual meetings with other high-profile inmates like Unitech Promoter Sanjay Chandra and others. Chandra, according to police, introduced Chandrasekhar to his alleged cash handlers – the Ramnani Brothers. This meeting and introduction made Chandrasekhar plan his biggest-ever conjob wherein he went to the extent of impersonating officials of the Prime Minister’s office and the home ministry and laundering money to foreign countries like Hong Kong through shell companies.

Pradeep and Deepak Ramnani allegedly laundered a large chunk of the Rs 200 crore extortion money at 7% commission. The rest was invested in expensive cars, watches, jewellery and real estate. The ED seized 16 high-end cars, a luxurious beachfront bungalow located in Chennai, Rs 82.5 lakh in cash and 2kg of gold in August.

Chandrasekhar, the probe has revealed, had procured a labourer’s SIM card and then used an app called “Hushed” for creating a virtual WhatsApp and telegram number. He then used another app called “Crazy Call” for spoofing the numbers of senior government functionaries and forcing the victims to pay on the pretext that it was meant for the “Party Fund”.

The chargesheet also details how Chandrasekhar kept jail officials on his payroll and how the jail staff used curtains and water bottles to hide him from CCTVs. Seven jail officials have been arrested in the case since it emerged that they were on a monthly payroll for Chandrasekhar. The conman is learnt to be spending over Rs 1 crore per month on jail officials to grant him full freedom behind bars. In all, he allegedly spent around Rs 20 crores on jail officials in lieu of favours like allowing use of smartphones and other facilities in jail illegally.

In July, the special cell of Delhi Police had filed an FIR in the case. The Ramnani brothers – Pradeep and Deepak – were first to be arrested in the case followed by Chandrasekhar during a raid at Rohini jail. The case was then transferred to EOW which arrested Komal Poddar, a manager at RBL Bank, Connaught Place branch and two of his associates, Jitender And Avinash, on charges of allegedly facilitating and laundering money for Chandrasekhar. Thereafter, seven jail officials and a hawala dealer, Avtar Singh alias Dolly Kochar, was arrested as well.

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Original posted at timesofindia.indiatimes.com

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