“In the Moser Baer bank fraud case, the proceeds of crime belonging to Deepak Puri (Ratul Puri’s father) for an amount of $ 16.33 million have been seized in the hands of Rajiv Saxena ”, according to one of the ED’s seizure orders. Saxena helped Puri launder funds generated by Indian banks, he added.
The ED investigation revealed that $ 16.33 million belonging to Puri was parked in the accounts of Matrix group companies controlled by Saxena and his wife. “Similarly, funds belonging to Ratul Puri and transferred to Rajiv Saxena from an undisclosed foreign entity have also been seized in the hands of Saxena,” the ED noted.
Saxena was deported from Dubai and arrested for the first time on January 31, 2019 in the AgustaWestland money laundering and bribery case. Later, he became the approver of the case and sought release after agreeing to disclose all information related to the bribes received from defense intermediaries in the AgustaWestland helicopter settlement of Rs 3,600 crore. The ED investigated and tracked down a portion of the alleged Rs 423 million bribes received in the deal by various intermediaries and passed on to politicians here.
The ED’s investigation further revealed that Saxena, a Dubai-based chartered accountant, was behind various defense payments and various other bribery deals. It provided services for its shell companies registered in different tax havens to launder the “proceeds of crime.” He has also been linked to the Iffco bribery case involving payments of Rs 685 crore.
Last year, the DE had approached the Delhi High Court to revoke its approval status, as it had allegedly been withholding key information with the agency related to bribery and laundering of proceeds of crime. The agency also objected to allowing him to leave the country, saying he faced a “life threat,” as it has clues about huge profits related to more than half a dozen defense deals.
In its supplemental charge sheet filed in the AugustaWestland case in 2019, the DE had accused Saxena of withholding information related to Ratul Puri, who was also charged with laundering bribes received in the AgustaWestland VVIP helicopter deal.
On her charge sheet, the Emergency Department had stated that Puri “warned” Saxena not to reveal any details about her “uncle” and her father to investigating officers. Saxena is a key witness in the case, having maintained all the transactions related to the alleged payments in the AgustaWestland case on behalf of Puri, according to the ED.