The Enforcement Directorate recently issued orders for the provisional attachment of assets worth Rs.1.12 crore acquired by British national Christian Michel, an accused in the Agusta Westland VVIP chopper deal case.
- Enforcement Directorate, established in the year 1956, is a law enforcement agency and economic intelligence agency responsible for enforcing economic laws and fighting economic crime in India.
- Directorate of Enforcement is a specialized financial investigation agency under the Department of Revenue, Ministry of Finance, Government of India, which enforces the following laws: –
- Foreign Exchange Management Act,1999 (FEMA) – A civil law having quasi judicial powers, for investigating suspected contraventions of the Exchange Control laws and regulations with powers to impose penalties on those adjudged guilty.
- Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA) – A Criminal Law, with the officers empowered to conduct investigations to trace assets derived out of the proceeds of crime, and to provisionally attach/ confiscate the same, to arrest and prosecute the offenders found to be involved in Money Laundering.
The other functions include:
- To collect, develop and disseminate intelligence relating to violations of FEMA, 1999, the intelligence inputs are received from various sources such as Central and State Intelligence agencies, complaints etc.
- To investigate suspected violations of the provisions of the FEMA, 1999 relating to activities such as “hawala” foreign exchange racketeering, non-realization of export proceeds, non-repatriation of foreign exchange and other forms of violations under FEMA, 1999.
- To adjudicate cases of violations of the erstwhile FERA, 1973 and FEMA, 1999.
- To realize penalties imposed on conclusion of adjudication proceedings.
- To handle adjudication, appeals and prosecution cases under the erstwhile FERA, 1973
- To process and recommend cases for preventive detention under the Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of Smuggling Activities Act (COFEPOSA)
- To undertake survey, search, seizure, arrest, prosecution action etc. against offender of PMLA offence.
- To provide and seek mutual legal assistance to/from contracting states in respect of attachment/confiscation of proceeds of crime as well as in respect of transfer of accused persons under PMLA.
Sources: The Hindu, enforcementdirectorate.gov.in.