AgustaWestland case: Delhi court reserves order on Christian Michel’s bail plea

A Delhi court on Wednesday reserved its order on the bail plea of Christian Michel, alleged middleman charge-sheeted and arrested in the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper case, for December 22.

Michel was produced before Special Judge Arvind Kumar on expiry of his 4-day CBI custody where the counsel for the 57-year-old British national told the judge that he was not required for custodial interrogation and no purpose will be served by keeping him in further custody.

Michel was arrested in the UAE and extradited to India on December 4. The next day, he was produced in the court, which allowed his five-day custodial interrogation by the CBI which was later extended by five more days and later for another four days.

Michel is among the three alleged middlemen being probed in the case by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

Both the agencies (ED and CBI) notified an Interpol red corner notice (RCN) against him after the court issued a non-bailable warrant against him.

The CBI opposed the bail application saying the accused was an influential person having links with people from the ministry and other bureaucrats and politicians, many of who are its witnesses in the case.

However, the defence counsel had opposed the CBI application for more remand, saying already enough time was granted to the agency and nothing incriminating was found against the accused.

The CBI has alleged there was an estimated loss of Euro 398.21 million to the exchequer in the deal that was signed in February 2010 for the supply of VVIP choppers worth Euro 556.262 million. 

The ED, in its charge sheet filed against Michel in June 2016, had alleged that he received EUR 30 million from AgustaWestland.