BENGALURU: Mohammed Mansoor Khan, founder-owner of IMA Group, was under close police watch at least for a week, but still managed to fly out to the UAE easily on June 8, sources in the know said. Sources revealed Khan was interrogated by police two days before he fled the country, the grilling perhaps triggering his escape. Central Crime Branch (CCB) police, based on a tipoff on his company’s shady dealings, had summoned Khan for questioning, police admitted. The decision to grill Khan also came in the backdrop of a recent alert from the Reserve Bank of India about IMA Group’s activities“As directed by DG&IGP Neelamani Raju, we called Khan for an enquiry and he appeared on June 6,” said Alok Kumar, additional commissioner of police (crime). “Khan appeared with his auditors and we questioned him for an hour. We directed him to furnish documents such as his company’s balance sheet. Khan promised to appear before us again on June 9.”Another police officer said, “Apart from the RBI alert, Khan himself had filed a complaint against a private TV news channel. We interrogated him on both issues. But we had no inkling that he would flee the country.” A source in the home department said the government, at one point, even mulled arresting Khan, but backtracked for the want of a complaint against him. ED files case Meanwhile on Friday, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) filed a case of money laundering against IMA Group, which allegedly short-changed thousands of gullible investors of hundreds of crores of rupees through its Ponzi schemes. The agency’s zonal office in Bengaluru filed an Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR) — equivalent to an FIR — and pressed criminal charges under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), officials said.
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