New Delhi, January 10: Alleged middleman Christian Michel, arrested in the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper case, moved a Delhi court Thursday seeking permission to make calls to his family members and his lawyers abroad. Michel, lodged in Tihar central jail here, moved an application through his advocate before special judge Arvind Kumar, who directed the jail authorities to file a response to the plea by Monday.
The accused told the court that jail authorities rejected his plea seeking the permission. Michel, who was extradited from Dubai, was arrested by the ED on December 22. The court had earlier imposed restrictions on Michel meeting his lawyers while he was in ED custody after the agency had said he was misusing legal access by passing chits to the advocates, asking them how to tackle questions on "Mrs Gandhi". AgustaWestland Chopper Scam: Sonia Gandhi's Name in Diary, Christian Michel Will Reveal Secrets, Says PM Modi.
Christian Michel has moved an application before a special CBI court seeking permission to make international calls to his family, friends and to his lawyers. The court has asked the jail superintendent to submit a report on January 14. #agustawestland (file pic) pic.twitter.com/r5JTXDafEE
— ANI (@ANI) January 10, 2019
ED's counsels, D P Singh and N K Matta, had also claimed that during questioning, he had spoken about the "son of an Italian lady" and how he was going to become the next prime minister of the country. "We also need to decipher who the 'big man' referred to as 'R' is in the communications between Michel and other people," the ED had told the court. Later, he was sent to judicial custody in the case on January 5. He is also lodged in judicial custody in the CBI case related to the scam. AgustaWestland Case: Delhi Court Grants Further 5-day Remand of Christian Michel.
Michel is among the three alleged middlemen being probed in the case by the ED and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The others are Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa. The ED, in its charge sheet filed against Michel in June 2016, had alleged that he had received 30 million euros (about Rs 225 crore) from AgustaWestland. The CBI, in its charge sheet, has alleged an estimated loss of 398.21 million euros (about Rs 2,666 crore) to the exchequer in the deal that was signed on February 8, 2010 for the supply of VVIP choppers worth 556.262 million euros.