The ED searches were conducted in connection with an ongoing investigation under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) 2002 of the Heera group. According to ED, Salarpuria Sattva entered into a transaction with Heera and money has been routed to shell firms.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Wednesday, November 9, said it has conducted search operations at the premises of Salarpuria Sattva group and frozen assets in the form of bank balances of Rs 49.99 crore lying in 316 bank accounts.
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Also, the agency seized cash in the form of Indian currency of Rs 29 lakh approximately and foreign currencies (of multiple countries) for which the value is being ascertained.
The searches were conducted in connection with an ongoing investigation under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) 2002 of the Heera group, which laundered money through layering and transferring the crime proceeds.
According to ED, Salarpuria Sattva entered into a transaction with the Heera Group and money has been routed to shell firms.
Heera is accused of duping investors after luring them to invest in gold saving schemes. The Heera group has 74 branches across the country and abroad and engaged 430 marketing agents in the branches to collect the deposits from investors.
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During the investigation of the money trail by ED, it was revealed that Rs 41 crore of crime proceeds have been layered and transferred to
Bengaluru-based company Neelanchal Technocrats Pvt Ltd (part of Salarpuria Sattva group) and multiple other shell entities registered in Kolkata and Shillong under the instructions of promoters of the group.
The Salarpuria Sattva group is controlled by its promoter-director Bijay Kumar Aggarwal; and its group directors Pradeep Dhandhania and Ashwin Sancheti negotiated a real estate deal for a land parcel at Tolichowki, Hyderabad, and instructed transferring of crime proceeds to shell entities.
Various other shell entities were identified during the search. It was detected that these funds were re-routed back into the Salarpuria Sattva group companies through their group NBFC registered in Kolkata.
On further questioning, the directors of Salarpuria group could not explain the business rationale of these transactions and reasons for layering the proceeds of crime through shell entities of Kolkata and Shillong.
A search by the ED helped to unearth the crime proceeds and to gather pieces of evidence of money laundering. Further investigation into the case is under progress, the agency said.
(Edited by : Shoma Bhattacharjee)