Accused jewellery fraudster Nirav Modi asserts he has no funds to pay UK court fees
Nirav Modi, Indian jewellery tycoon accused of fraud, has claimed that he has no funds to pay his UK, court-ordered legal fees and is borrowing money to pay over £150,000. Modi is attempting to appeal his ordered extradition to India to stand trial for his alleged fraud at the Punjab National Bank.
Modi stated that his assets have all been frozen in India as part of the fraud investigation which means he has no funds to pay for his UK court fees, the Press Trust of India reported. Modi’s case is now statute barred in the UK and Modi was previously granted his plea to pay £10,000 a month before a review hearing.
Nirav Modi is currently being held by UK authorities at Wandsworth Prison where he has been kept since his arrest in London in March, 2019. Modi’s legal team are appealing his extradition order on the grounds that he is suffering from poor mental health and is at risk of suicide if he returns to India to stand trial. The team have also stated that they believe he will be held in inhumane conditions in India and they believe that the government has political motivations for finding him guilty, something Indian authorities have vehemently denied.
Modi is accused of defrauding banks including the PNB out of around $2 billion along with his uncle and fellow jewellery tycoon Mehul Choksi, who Indian authorities are also attempting to extradite to India to stand trial. However, where Modi’s extradition trial was conducted in the UK, Indian authorities are experiencing challenges setting up a trial for Choksi, who is believed to be residing in Antigua, which has no extradition treaty with India and is where he has taken citizenship.
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