Dominica High Court denies bail to Mehul Choksi, says he is a ‘flight risk’

Dominica court stays Mehul Choksi's repatriation, Antigua PM says it's govt's sovereign decision
Image credits: ANI

In a huge setback for fugitive Mehul Choksi, the Dominica High Court has denied bail to the PNB scam accused. The court said he doesn’t have any ties to Dominica and it cannot impose any conditions to assure he won’t abscond.

Pointing out Mehul Choksi’s proposal that he will stay with his brother in a hotel, the Dominica High Court said it is not a fixed address. The court also said that his trial is yet to begin.

Judge Wynante Adrien-Roberts of Dominica High Court rejected bail to Mehul Choksi after the submissions made by both the sides concluded.

Dominica High Court: ‘He’s a flight risk’

The court also noted that no strong surety was offered by Mehul Choksi while he sought bail. Furthermore, the court said that he is a flight risk too, Antigua Newsroom reported.

Meanwhile, the Dominican court has provided interim relief to Mehul Choksi from immediate repatriation to India.

During the arguments, the Counsel for Choksi dismissed the flight risk and cited medical grounds for bail.

What did Dominica PM say?

Earlier, calling Mehul Choksi an “Indian citizen”, Dominica Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit had stated that the courts will decide the fate of the fugitive businessman.

Furthermore, he said that the government will protect the right of Mehul Choksi as he awaits trial.

“The matter with this Indian citizen is before the courts, the courts will decide what happens to this gentleman and we allow the court process to go through,” Loop Jamaica News quoted that Dominica PM as saying.

Arrested in Dominica

On May 23, the 63-year-old fugitive went missing from Antigua after he went out for dinner. However, the police soon caught him in Dominica.

Police charged him with illegal entry in Dominica. He allegedly fled from Antigua and Barbuda in a possible attempt to evade extradition to India.

Mehul Choksi is wanted in India in connection with a Rs 13,500-crore fraud in the Punjab National Bank (PNB).