The Enforcement Directorate has seized gold and diamond jewelery worth ₹5.51 crore and ₹1.21 crore cash during search and surveys at 15 locations at Nagpur and Mumbai last Friday to investigate further in an investment fraud case against Pankaj Nandlal Mehadia and others.

The ED officially stated that the searches were done at the residences and offices of Pankaj Mehadia, Lokesh Jain, Karthik Jain, who are the main accused in the ponzi scam. The sleuths also searched the office and residential premises of the main beneficiaries of the case. .

Siphoning off investors’ money

ED’s probe on money laundering revealed that Mehadia along with other accomplices were running a ponzi scheme and lured various investors by promising to give 12 per cent assured profit after deducting TDS on the investments made from 2004 to 2017.”Throughout the period from 2005 to 2016 , with the mala fide intentions of cheating and siphoning off the investors’ money, the accused persons ran the ponzi scheme giving assured returns to win over the investors and thus luring the investors to invest in larger amounts in the associated firms/companies and ultimately did not return the money,” ED alleged in a statement.

Many fraud transactions have been given a tinge of legitimacy, said the ED. “More than ₹150 crores held in different bank accounts are suspected to be tainted since most of these transactions are not backed by genuine business deals and are in the nature of accommodation entries,” the ED alleged.

PMLA investigation

ED initiated the PMLA investigation based on an FIR registered at Sitabuldi Police Station, Nagpur, against Pankaj Nandlal Mehadiya, Lokesh Santosh Jain, Kartik Santosh Jain, Balmukund Lalchand Keyal, Premlata Nandlal Mehadiya in a fraud causing loss to investors in crores of rupees.

Mehadia, who was arrested by local police last year, along with other associates reportedly made investments worth crores through their companies and later declared themselves bankrupt before the National Company Law Tribunal.

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