A UK court on Friday rejected the bail application of fugitive businessman Nirav Modi, who will now remain in custody till May 24, the day the next hearing will be held.
The court is hearing the extradition case of Nirav Modi in the $1 billion Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud and money laundering case.
The 48-year-old, who has been behind bars at Wandsworth prison in south-west London since his arrest last month, appeared before Westminster Magistrates’ Court Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot via video link from the jail.
“Mr Modi, you will be back for another short hearing via video link on May 24, with a full hearing in the case planned for May 30 when you will be produced in person,” Judge Arbuthnot said.
She asked his barrister Jessica Jones if there were any matters to be considered and was told there were none, which confirmed that Modi’s team did not file another bail application before the court.
The May 24 hearing will be another procedural one, to meet the 28-day timeline for judicial custody in such cases in the UK. The case will then proceed to a full case management hearing, scheduled for May 30 so far, when Modi will be produced in person.
On March 29, the court had rejected Nirav Modi’s second bail application, saying there are “substantial grounds” to believe the fugitive diamantaire will fail to surrender.
Earlier, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), arguing on behalf of Indian authorities, said Modi should not be granted bail because he posed a significant flight risk and had even issued death threats to witnesses related to his fraud and money laundering case.
Modi was denied bail by District Judge Marie Mallon at his first hearing soon after his arrest by Scotland Yard officers from a central London bank branch as he tried to open a new bank account and has been in custody at HMP Wandsworth prison in south-west London since then.