Tamil Nadu: ED attaches over Rs 400-cr worth assets in two money laundering probes

02:03 PM Jul 03, 2022 | PTI |

Chennai: The ED has attached assets of more than Rs 400 crore in two different money laundering cases linked to alleged bank and lottery frauds in Tamil Nadu.


In the first case, the federal agency said in a statement, that a provisional order for attaching Rs 234.75 crore worth of properties of Sarvana Stores (Gold Palace), Chennai, which is accused of cheating the Indian Bank, has been issued.

The agency alleged late Pallakudurai, P Sujatha, and Y P Shravan, partners of Saravana Stores (Gold Palace), ”conspired” with unknown public servants and others to cheat the bank’s branch located in the T. Nagar area of Chennai.

The business house had ”applied for sanctioning of loan by fabricating balance sheet and projecting sound financial health of the firm. There is a huge mismatch between the sales reported and credit entries of the firm,” it said.

The firm presented a ”cosmetic” picture of expected turnover for upcoming financial years at the time of availing of the loan, it said.


”To cheat Indian Bank, a significant wrongful loss and deriving personal gain, the firm in collusion with property valuer, bank officials, and certain private persons proposed to purchase assets at a price which is much higher than the real fair market value,” it said.

”The investigation conducted under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act has adequately established the ill motives of accused individuals and bank officials from the inception,” the ED alleged.

The accused ”overstated” the inventory, transferred the assets without the knowledge of the bank, used the OCC (open cash credit) limits to repay the term loan, misappropriated and diverted the funds for which it was not sanctioned, and committed other irregularities and thereby, cheated the bank and caused wrongful loss to it, the ED said. The money laundering case was registered in May after the ED took cognizance of a CBI FIR filed a month earlier against the accused.

In the second case, the agency provisionally attached Rs 173.48 crore worth of assets of Santiago Martin, known as the ”lottery king” in Tamil Nadu.

”Attached properties consist of various movable and immovable properties in the form of bank accounts and land situated in Tamil Nadu standing in his (Martin’s) name as well as in the name of his various companies,” the ED said.

The ED booked Martin and others under the anti-money laundering law after taking cognizance of a charge sheet filed by the CBI, Kochi office against the accused under various sections of the IPC and Lotteries (Regulation) Act of 1998.

It was found, the ED said, that the partners of M.J. Associates, Santiago Martin, and N Jayamurugan, made ”unlawful gain with a corresponding loss to the government of Sikkim to the extent of Rs 910,29,87,566 (about Rs 910.29 crore) on account of inflating the prize-winning tickets claim between 01.04.2009 and 31.08.2010, which is nothing but proceeds of crime under the PMLA.” The agency, in the past, has issued four similar attachment orders against Martin and others under which assets worth Rs 278 crore were attached.


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