ED arrests 2 in Shakti Bhog bank loan fraud PMLA case

#bank loan fraud, #Enforcement Directorate, #PMLA case, #Shakti Bhog food company

Enforcement Directorate

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday said it has arrested two operatives, who allegedly provided fake business entries, in connection with its probe into money laundering charges against Shakti Bhog food company in an alleged over Rs 3,269 crore bank fraud case. The arrests came after the agency raided over a dozen premises in Delhi and Uttar Pradesh on September 17.

“Accommodation entry providers Ashok Kumar Goel and Devki Nandan Garg were arrested from Delhi,” the agency said in a statement, adding Goel was arrested on September 20 and Garg the next day under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act. It said a local court had earlier sent Goel and Garg in ED till custody till Friday and it has now been extended for five more days.

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“During searches, various incriminating documents and digital evidence have been traced and seized,” the ED claimed. It alleged that “Shakti Bhog Foods Limited had procured fake sale-purchase invoices from the dummy entities under the command and control of Ashok Kumar Goel and Devki Nandan Garg without having any genuine business transactions”.

“They acquired the proceeds of crime and assisted Shakti Bhog Foods Limited in generation, acquisition, layering and siphoning off its loans funds,” it said. The agency had earlier arrested the chairman and managing director of Shakti Bhog Foods Limited K K Sharma and a chartered accountant named Raman Bhuraria in this case.

The ED’s money laundering case against Shakti Bhog Foods Limited was filed after studying a CBI FIR that charged it and others for criminal conspiracy, cheating and criminal misconduct. The CBI FIR came about after the State Bank of India (SBI) registered a complaint against the company. According to the SBI, the directors allegedly falsified accounts and forged documents to siphon off public funds.

The 24-year-old company, which is into manufacturing and selling wheat, flour, rice, biscuits, cookies and others, had grown organically as it ventured into food-related diversification over a decade with a turnover growth of Rs 1,411 crore in 2008 to Rs 6,000 crore in 2014, the bank complaint had said.

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