Moments after having heard the UK court order his extradition to India, fugitive economic offender Vijay Mallya remained defiant in his defense that he is innocent and told media that he will consider all the legal options present in front him.
Having learnt that the Chief Magistrate Judge Emma Arbuthnot found prima facie a case for fraud, conspiracy and money laundering against him, following which the case has been referred to the Secretary of State, Mallya kept on mentioning that his legal team would look into what needs to be done.
When confronted by the journalists outside the court, the liquor baron said, "She told me it's a long process. She told me about my right to appeal. She also, very generously said that I had a good legal team who would give me good advice going forward. We spent the last half an hour going through the judgment. It's unfortunate that the judge has found a prima facie case that I misrepresentations to the IDBI bank only and persuaded them to loan money to Kingfisher airlines, be that as it may, the judge was entitled to make whatever judgment she thought fit. I have my rights. You heard the judge. My legal team will consider various options and then I will decide going forward."
The liquor baron, who has been accused of defrauding Indian banks to a tune of Rs 9000 crore, was presented in front of the Westminster Magistrates' Court where the judge pronounced that he shall be extradited on Monday.
Following the recent judgment, Mallya has a right to appeal against the decision and has 14 days to do so. The verdict would now be referred to the Secretary of State, who shall have two months to decide on his extradition order. Only after the Secretary of State's decision will Mallya's appeal against the extradition be listed for hearing before the High Court.
The 62-year-old former Kingfisher Airlines boss has been on bail since his arrest on an extradition warrant in April last year. He has contested his extradition on the grounds that the case against him is "politically motivated" and the loans he has been accused of defrauding on were sought to keep his now-defunct airline afloat.