Gold Smuggling accused Sandeep Nair’s lawyer has said that his client did not lodge a complaint with the state police chief against the Enforcement Directorate (ED).
“The allegations that the Crime Branch lodged a case against ED on Sandeep’s complaint is false,” Advocate PV Vijayam told a leading Malayalam news channel. “Sandeep only sent a complaint to the court. However, the copy of that complaint has not been forwarded to the Crime Branch,” Vijayam said, adding how could the Crime Branch file a case based on the complaint.
Sandeep wrote a letter to the Ernakulam District Sessions judge claiming that an ED official had forced him to name the Chief Minister, other ministers and the son of a senior leader in the case. The three-page letter addressing the district judge further claims that the ED is misleading the case.
Sandeep claims that he was not even allowed to sleep as he did not testify against the Chief Minister and was even threatened. The letter also alleges that the officials promised him bail and more if he acted as per their direction. He further claims that his life is under threat from the ED officials.
Vijayam said that either the Ernakulam District Sessions judge should have gone through the letter and suggested further action or the lawyer should have approached the police. “The Crime Branch just file a case based on media reports alone,” said Advocate Vijayam.
On March 19, the Kerala Crime Branch filed a case against the central agency based on statements of 18 people including gold smuggling accused Swapna Suresh. Following this, the home secretary received legal advice that a case could be registered against the central agency and the incident be probed. Two woman officers told the Crime Branch that ED officials forced Swapna to give false statements against the Chief Minister during questioning.