ED arrests Abhishek Verma, wife in money laundering case

Abhishek Verma and his wife were arrested by ED in connection with a money laundering case registered against the couple.

Updated: Aug 22, 2012, 23:24 PM IST

New Delhi: Businessman Abhishek Verma and his wife were on Wednesday arrested by the Enforcement Directorate in connection with a money laundering case registered against the couple for allegedly receiving money from a Swiss defence firm to keep it out of the government`s blacklist.

An ED team recorded the statement of the couple, presently in judicial custody in a forgery case, before they were placed under arrest under the stringent provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

The arrest of Verma and his Romanian wife Anca Maria Neascu by the agency comes as additional trouble for the duo as they are already embroiled in a host of criminal cases and the CBI has arrested them in two separate cases so far.

The ED had yesterday told the court that they would place the couple under arrest in connection with the fresh PMLA case it has filed against them sometime back.

Today`s step, according to sources, was necessary to strengthen the probe in the case as both the ED and CBI are probing the role of the duo from various angles and they want to prepare a watertight case against them.

They were remanded in 14 days judicial custody by a court yesterday in a forgery case registered on Union Minister Ajay Maken`s complaint.

Earlier, both the accused had been granted bail on August 8 in a corruption case registered by the CBI for allegedly receiving USD 530,000 from Rheinmetall Air Defence AG (RAD) for using his influence to stall its blacklisting proceedings by Indian government.

The ED made this case as the basis for filing its criminal complaint against them.

The couple were granted bail after the CBI had failed to file charge sheet against them within stipulated 60 days` period after their arrest on June 8 in the corruption case.

The CBI, however, had arrested them on the same day in the fresh forgery case, registered on Union Sports Minister Maken`s complaint, in the courtroom itself.

They were accused of writing a letter to the Prime Minister in 2009 on Maken`s forged letterhead for easing of business visa norms.

They have been sent to judicial custody till September 4.