A Delhi Court on Thursday reserved its order on a plea of Christian Michel, the alleged middleman arrested in the AgustaWestland chopper scam, who had sought seven-day interim bail to celebrate Easter with family. Special Judge Arvind Kumar said he would pronounce order at 4pm after hearing argument of lawyers from both sides.
Special public prosecutor DP Singh, appearing for CBI and ED, opposed Michel's plea, saying India is a country of various festival — thousands of prisoners thousands of prisoners are in jails and everyone has faith in religion — so the accused can't be allowed to go out of jail to celebrate festivals.
He said Michel can participate in Easter in custody. The lawyer argued before the court that if Michel comes out on interim bail and makes statement outside, it can derail investigation. Michel's lawyer argued that since the charge sheet has been filed, there is no point of tampering evidence.
He said the accused is cooperating in the case and sought bail.
"Being a Christian, he was not even allowed to offer a holy mass even during Christmas...," said the application moved by the accused. "It is submitted that the week commencing form 14th April to 21st April is a holy week for Christians and 21st April is Easter which will be celebrated universally. The petitioner wishes to attend the holy mass on Easter day and would like to make offerings during the Easter day," Michel has said in his plea.
Read: EXPLOSIVE: ED Cracks Agusta Kickbacks Scandal. Republic TV Accesses 52-page ED Supplementary Chargesheet Where Middleman Christian Michel Mentions 'Ítalian Lady's Son', 'Family' And 'Ahmed Patel'
Earlier, Republic TV had accessed the 52-pages full explosive ED chargesheet of AgustaWestland case in which middleman Christian Michel has spilled the beans. Earlier, the probe agencies had recovered hand-written diaries detailing the alleged kickbacks paid for the choppers. Even though the investigating agencies had recovered hand-written diary notings detailing the alleged kickbacks paid for the 12 AW-101 AgustaWestland deal. These noting mentioned ‘FAM’, ‘AP’ among others – answers to which were unknown so far. However, as per ED conclusion, Christian Michel has revealed what 'AP’ and 'FAM’ stands for.
The 'Italian lady’s son' mention:
The 52-page chargesheet mentions meetings with 'the Italian lady's son' who 'will be the next Prime Minister'. Reference to 'Son's power growing in the party and mother unaware of full facts' have been made as part of the dispatch published by the Enforcement Directorate.
Furthermore, the chargesheet mentions that 'Kickbacks worth 70 Million Euros' were given to 'defense officials and top political leaders'.
Earlier in December, Christian Michel was extradited to India from Dubai through a high-security CBI-led procedure. Christian Michel James has been described as a historical consultant of AgustaWestland/Westland Helicopters, UK with technical operational knowledge of the aircraft, the military bases and the pilots, by the CBI.
He is among the three alleged middlemen being probed in the case by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The others are Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa.
(With inputs from PTI)