NEW DELHI: A Delhi court has on Friday remanded TMC leader Anubrata Mondal to the Enforcement Directorate's custody for a period of 11 days in a money laundering case arising out of cattle smuggling in West Bengal.
Mondal who was district president of TMC, Birbhumi, was brought to Delhi on March 8 and had remained in the ED's custody for two days.
The ED told the court, "The custodial interrogation of the accused was also required to establish the modus operandi and interse relationship between various accomplices."
Special Judge Raghubir Singh permitted the plea by the ED that Mondal was further required for interrogation as money trail was to be ascertained since he along with the other accused persons had generated huge proceeds of crime by cattle smuggling.
"The alleged role of accused Mondal (as was also deciphered during the course of arguments on the application in hand), was mainly that of providing protection and political patronage to the rest accused persons in general and to the kingpin i.e. accused Enamul Haque in particular," the court said.
"Several Crores of proceeds of crime were allegedly generated and laundered by the accused persons. Not only the number of accused persons is large, but also the documents are voluminous. The nature of the offence of money laundering in itself is intricate," it added.
The ED led by special public prosecutor Nitesh Rana contended the agency was earlier granted two days effective police custody but in those two days, one day could not have been properly utilised on account of Holi festival. It also claimed there was a language barrier as the accused was not able to understand either English or Hindi.
It also contended 12 witnesses/accused were also be confronted with Mondal during the custodial interrogation.
The agency also submitted there were voluminous documents in the case and it has also to find out the money trail.
Mondal was represented by advocate Mudit Jain.
Initially, the CBI Kolkata had registered an FIR in the case on September 21, 2020, on against Satish Kumar, the then BSF Commandant, Mohd Enamul Haque, Mohd Anarul Sk, Mohd Golam Mustafa and other unknown public servants and private persons, who were allegedly involved in cattle smuggling.
Subsequently, the ED registered the case on September 25, 2020 which named 13 accused persons.
Mondal was first arrested on November 17, 2022 but he could not be interrogated in custody due pendency of litigations in the Calcutta and the Delhi High Courts, the court was informed.