Diamond merchant Mehul Choksi could soon be extradited to India to face charges related to the US$2 billion letter of credit (L/C) and letter of undertaking (LoU) fraud at Punjab National Bank (PNB).

Choksi fled India when it was clear that investigators had deduced that he played a key role in the PNB scam.

He had already obtained citizenship of Antigua and Barbuda in November 2017 and fled his homeland, India, in January 2018.

Revoking citizenship

It now looks like the diamond trader's citizenship of Antigua and Barbuda will be revoked and he will be returned to India, although when that will happen is not clear.

"Choksi's citizenship was processed, he got through. We do have recourse, the reality is that his citizenship will be revoked and he will be deported to India," Prime Minister Gaston Brown told the Antigua Observer.

He could be extradited to India after he exhausts all legal options, Brown added.

Resisting extradition

Choksi is resisting efforts to extradite him and is expected to explore several legal options.

Nirav Modi, Choksi's nephew and the other main suspect in the PNB L/C and LoU scam is currently in a British jail. India is also seeking his extradition.

Different circumstances

The Indian authorities have managed to obtain from Interpol a Red Corner Notice against Modi but have yet been able to secure a similar notice against Choksi.

They allegedly obtained credit from overseas branches of Indian banks on the basis of fraudulent guarantees in the form of L/Cs and LoUs issued by PNB Brady House branch in Mumbai with the connivance of bank officials.

This article represents the views of the author and not necessarily those of the ICC or Coastline Solutions.