PACL case: ED files prosecution complaint

The Enforcement Directorate on Wednesday filed prosecution complaint in a Delhi court against M/s PACL and its directors Nirmal Singh Bhangoo and others in respect of attached properties in Australia valued at Rs.472 crore belonging to M/s PACL Ltd.

During an investigation in the case, illegal and fraudulent activities on the part of promoters/directors of PGF and PACL have been revealed. They collected more than Rs. 48,000 crore of funds from investors all over the country through a collective investment scheme in the garb of sale and development of agriculture land.

Out of the said funds, the company has invested the proceeds of crime worth Rs. 164 crores in M/s Pearls Infrastructure Projects Limited (PIPL) for acquiring 25.37 per cent shares and the remaining 74.63 per cent shares of PIPL were acquired indirectly by PACL through its 43 front companies for an investment of Rs. 493.18 crores. Thus, in total PIPL, an associate company of PACL received Rs. 657.18 crores from PACL during the period 2009 to 2014.

PIPL further invested proceeds of crime worth (i) Rs. 147.38 crores in 2010 for acquiring 50 per cent of shares of M/s Miiresorts Group 1 Pty Ltd and (ii) Rs. 459.23 crores from 2009 to 2014 for acquiring 99.24 per cent shares of M/s Miigroup Holdings Pty Ltd, Australia; which further invested Rs 147.38 crores in M/s Miiresorts Group 1 Pty Ltd for acquiring 50 per cent of shares and (iii) Rs. 25.07 crores were remitted to Australia to Hicky Lawyers Trust for purchase of immovable property (Sanctuary Cove Properties).

In May 2010, M/s Miiresorts Group 1 Pty Ltd out of the funds received purchased Sheraton Mirage Hotel for a price of approximately 62.5 million and sold the same to Australian Wattle Development Pty Ltd and the proceeds of sale (AUD 87.37 million equivalent to Rs. 447 crores) by the order of the Federal Court of Australia were received by McCullough Robertson lawyers and invested in an interest bearing account with an Australian trading bank. The said proceeds of sale and sanctuary cove properties have been attached.

The two Australian companies namely M/s Miiresorts Group 1 Pty Ltd and M/s Miigroup Holdings Pty Ltd are controlled by Mr. Nirmal Singh Bhangoo and his family members.

Further probe in the matter is underway.

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