London: A UK court on Thursday extended till July 25 the remand of fugitive diamond merchant Nirav Modi, who is wanted in India in connection with the nearly USD 2 billion Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud and money laundering case.
The 48-year-old, who fights his extradition from Britain to India has been behind bars at Wandsworth prison in south-west London since his arrest in March. The UK High Court on June 12 rejected Modi's bail application, his fourth attempt to get bail.
An arrest warrant was issued against him in May and then a second one in July last year, with an extradition request made to the UK authorities in August 2018. Modi appeared via videolink from prison for a routine remand hearing before Westminster Magistrates' Court in London on Thursday. Modi was arrested by uniformed Scotland Yard officers on an extradition warrant on March 19 and has been in prison since.
Under the UK law, Modi is expected to be produced before the court every four weeks, with another remand hearing expected before the July 29 case management hearing currently fixed in the court's calendar.
The UK Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), representing the Indian government, has until July 11 to present an opening position statement laying out the prima facie case against Modi, with the next case management hearing set for July 29 - when a timeline for extradition trial is expected to be laid out.