London/ New Delhi: The Royal Courts of Justice in London on Wednesday denied bail to Nirav Modi. It was his fourth attempt to secure bail in the ongoing extradition case which failed after the judge said there is compelling evidence that he has tried to interfere with witness statements.
Reading the ruling, Judge Ingrid Simpler said there is evidence to see that manipulation and attempt to destroy evidence has been made.
“It seems he has the means to access funds. It is difficult for me to see why the UK should be a safe haven for him to escape extradition”, the judge said, adding that there are still places in the world where one can move to in order to avoid extradition.
"The applicant has access to considerable financial resources, supported by an increased [bail bond security] offer of 2 million pounds," the Judge noted.
The judge concluded that it is "difficult to predict" how Modi would react to developments in the extradition process, raising a “strong incentive” of failure to surrender before the courts to avoid returning to India.
She also accepted the Westminster Magistrates' Court concerns that the diamond merchant had been based in the UK for only a short period of time and had no significant ties to the country, making him a flight risk.
Modi, who was not produced before the court for the latest bail hearing, remains in custody at Wandsworth prison in south-west London and is due to appear for his next remand hearing via videolink on June 27.
Nirav Modi is wanted in India for nearly USD 2 billion Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud and money laundering case.
Earlier, Modi's legal team presented arguments in an attempt to persuade the judge to overturn the Westminster Magistrates' Court ruling to deny bail during three previous attempts, for fear that the 48-year-old would fail to surrender.
Modi has already been denied bail at three previous attempts at Westminster Magistrates' Court in London, as the judge ruled there was "substantial risk" that he would fail to surrender and deemed the bail security offered as insufficient.
He was arrested by uniformed Scotland Yard officers on an extradition warrant from a Metro Bank branch in central London on March 19 and has been in prison since.