The city police, on Saturday, registered a criminal case against Iqbal Mirchi’s associate Mushraf Merchant and others for illegally routing money to Dubai by opening fake accounts in a bank branch in Kilpauk.
An FIR was registered against Mr. Merchant and the others under sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 420 (cheating), 471 (using forged documents as genuine) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for opening bank accounts by submitting fake KYC documents.
“On investigation, the Enforcement Directorate found that fake bank accounts were opened in IDBI, Kilpauk branch, to launder money after a land deal was inked between Sunblink Real Estate and Iqbal Mirchi in 2010,” said a senior police officer, speaking on condition of anonymity.
“These bank accounts were in the name of dummy tenants and were closed as soon as the money was transferred. Preliminary estimates showed nearly ₹40 crore was laundered using this modus operandi and the money was transferred to Dubai. Now, based on a complaint from the bank, the FIR was registered,” the officer added.
The transactions came to light after the ED began a probe into a loan of more than ₹2,100 crore disbursed by DHFL to Sunblink Real Estate, which was allegedly diverted to Dawood Ibrahim’s close associate Iqbal Mirchi in Dubai.
“During the statement recorded under custody, the accused (Ranjeet Bindra) accepted meetings and further negotiations with Iqbal Mirchi in London in respect of the said three properties as broker and on behalf of Sunblink Real Estate Private Limited,” the ED noted in its case file.
“He [the accused] further acknowledged the delivery of cheques related to the deal issued in the favour of fake dummy tenants to Rinku Deshpande. He further stated that the family of Rinku Deshpande is having contact with Iqbal Mirchi and his family. He further provided information about huge transaction of ₹2,186 crore undertaken by Sunblink Real Estate Private Limited with regard to subject three properties.”