Mumbai: Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Tuesday evening arrested former member of legislative assembly (MLA) from Panvel Vivekanand Patil in alleged money laundering probe linked to Rs 512.54 crore Karnala Nagari Sahakari Bank fraud. The accused along with others had allegedly siphoned off the money in the form of loans using forged documents.
"Patil, a resident of Panvel, has been found guilty of an offence of money laundering under the provisions of Prevention of Money Laundering Act. He was arrested around 8:15 pm on Tuesday. He will be produced before the special PMLA court on Wednesday and we are would seek his custody," said an ED official.
In February last year, Navi Mumbai police had booked 76 persons, including former MLA and Chairman of the Karnala Nagari Sahakari Bank headquartered in Panvel for the alleged irregularities to the tune of Rs 512.54 crore. The police sources alleged that loan accounts were opened in the bank without proper documentation and the said loan money was then misappropriated and routed to different accounts.
The case was registered against former PWP MLA from Panvel Vivekanand Shankar Patil, who is also the chairman of the cooperative bank along with the vice-chairman, directors and chief executive officer and several others who had obtained loans from the institution, the police said.
The Panvel Town police had filed an FIR on charges of criminal breach of trust, criminal conspiracy, causing disappearance of evidence of offence, cheating and forgery under provisions of Indian Penal Code, the Cooperative Societies Act and the Maharashtra Protection of Interest of Depositors Act.
A police had claimed that the irregularities were revealed after an inspection of the bank's operations by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) led to a special audit of the lender's 17 branches in April 2019.
ED had launched a money laundering probe on the basis of the FIR filed by the Navi Mumbai police, sources said.
"Myself, MLA Prashant Thakur and MLA Mahesh Baldi had been fighting for small depositors of this bank for 18 months," tweeted Kirit Somaiya.