2003 cheating case: Special court convicts two former public bank officials, one accused fined Rs 10 crore

The two accused had conspired with customs officials and others to claim customs duty drawback from the Customs Department by submitting forged export documents.

A special court Monday convicted four people and directed one of them to pay a fine of Rs 10.10 crore in connection with a 2003 cheating case. Two of the four accused were officials of a public bank at the time the crime was committed.

According to the prosecution led by special public prosecutor J K Sharma, in 2003, two of the accused Krishan Kumar Gupta and Sudhir Mandal had conspired with customs officials and others to claim customs duty drawback from the Customs Department by submitting forged export documents.

The two allegedly also prepared 11 fictitious firms with false export documents in their names. These were submitted to the department to claim duty drawback cheques aggregating to more than Rs 2 crore. The amount was then deposited in the Bank of India, Cotton Exchange branch in the name of a company, whose address was the Peddar Road residence of Gupta.

During investigation, the CBI found that the export bills were not reflected in the records of the Mumbai dock and the amount deposited was used by the two accused, the prosecutor had told the court. While Gupta was convicted for a period of six years and directed to pay a fine of Rs 10.10 crore, Mandal was sentenced to three years with Rs 1 lakh in fine. The two were convicted on charges of cheating and criminal conspiracy.

Two other accused Vasant Parkhe and Sunil Jadhav were sentenced to one year in jail and Rs 1 lakh as fine. While they were acquitted of charges of cheating and criminal conspiracy, they were found guilty under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

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