The Enforcement Directorate on Monday attached properties and bank accounts worth Rs 637 crore of fugitive jeweller Nirav Modi. The agency to probe financial crimes has seized Modi’s properties, expensive jewellery and bank accounts both in India and abroad.

This is a rare case where an Indian probe agency has taken over properties abroad as part of investigation.

Two immovable properties having a total value of USD 29.99 Million (Rs 216 Crores Approx) and beneficially owned by Nirav Modi in New York, have been attached by the ED under section 5 of Prevention of Money laundering Act. A flat in South Mumbai worth Rs 19.5 Crore also attached.

The agency has also attached five overseas bank accounts belonging to Modi having a balance of total Rs 278 Crore.

Diamond studded jewellery worth Rs 22.69 Crore has been brought back to India from Hong Kong.

The ED had earlier sought to confiscate assets of Nirav Modi, both movable and immovable, including those located in the UK and the UAE.

Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi are being investigated by the ED and the CBI after it was detected that they allegedly cheated Punjab National Bank of more than Rs 13,400 crore with the purported involvement of a few of its employees.

The scam, which reportedly began in 2011, was detected in January, after which PNB officials reported it to the probe agencies.

Two criminal complaints were filed by the ED in these instances after taking cognisance of CBI FIRs.

Non-bailable warrants were issued against Nirav Modi and Choksi. Also, an Interpol ‘red corner’ arrest warrant was issued against Nirav Modi on the ED’s request, who along with his family as well as uncle Choksi left the country in January, a month before the fraud came to light.