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Saradha chief remanded to judicial custody till July 10

A special court here remanded Saradha Group chief and alleged kingpin of the Saradha multi crore chit fund scam Sudipta Sen to judicial custody for seven days (till July 10) in a money laundering case.

The Khurda district and sessions judge court after hearing the counsels for Sen and the Enforcement Directorate (ED), has fixed the next date of hearing of July 10. Sen has been sent to Jharpada jail in the city.

Earlier, the Saradha Group head was brought here from Kolkata by a team of ED and Kolkata police.

“Following the initial probe, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) found some evidences pertaining to money laundering offence by the Saradha Group in Odisha. Later, the sub-divisional office of ED here had registered an Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR), equivalent to an FIR, against Sen”, said Debashis Panda, special prosecutor from ED.

The ED has sought remand for 14 days to interrogate Sen and if any evidence is found that violates Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), a chargesheet would be filed that would lead to trial, Panda added.

Saradha Group has allegedly duped thousands of investors in Odisha through Ponzi schemes, mainly in the coastal areas.

The state Crime Branch had earlier submitted a proposal to the state government, seeking interim orders for attaching properties of the Group under the Odisha Protection of Interests of Depositors (in Financial Establishments) Act, 2011.

In Odisha, fraudulent chit fund companies had duped investors’ money worth Rs 4600 crore, affecting around one million families.

The chit fund scam is being investigated by the CBI in accordance with the direction of the Supreme Court.

The central investigating agency is probing cases against 44 scam tainted firms in Odisha that include West Bengal based Saradha Group and state based Seashore and Artha Tatwa Group among others.

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