Pune: Fifteen years after a city-based businessman was duped of about Rs 1.36 crore by Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of courier company Elbee Services Ltd, he was taken into judicial custody.
Nicholas Picardo (69), a resident of Rasta Peth, had lodged an FIR against accused CMD Sandip Chamanlal Shah (43) of Khar East, Mumbai, and his two employees with Samarth police station. The court had discharged the employees but framed charges against Shah. According to the FIR, the company based in Mumbai, through its authorised signatory at Pune, had entered into an agreement with Picardo on January 1, 1999, to take his premises shop nos. 2, 3, 4 and 10 on the ground floor of Aden Villa, 479 Rasta Peth - on leave and license basis for a period of 11 months initially, for Rs 65,0001 per month. The company had given Rs 4 lakh as deposit amount.
“Later, the company began facing turbulent weather business-wise. So the company did not pay the rent and the TDS amount of the license fee. Also, the company officials did not vacate the premises and also restrained me from entering the premises. When I met senior officials they had assured that all outstanding amounts due will be paid. The company owed Rs 1.36 crore as on March 14, 2003,” Picardo stated in his complaint.
The shops were later attached by banks as Picardo was unable to pay the loan amount. Since 2007, the hearings are taking place in the court. The court has framed charges against Shah for offences under sections 406 (criminal breach of trust), 420 (cheating) and 341 (wrongful restraint) under the Indian Penal Code. At present, the hearing in the case is going on in the court Chief Judicial Magistrate Satyasheela Katare. As he was not attending the hearings, the court had issued a non-bailable warrant against him.
On February 27 this year, the accused Shah presented himself before the court and applied for bail which was rejected. “I have undergone serious neurosurgery a few months back and I am still on medication. If I am sent to jail, it will create severe health complications which might be out of control and would cause danger to me,” the bail application stated.
The court rejected his application and remanded him in 14-day magisterial custody.