Dominica court extends stay on extradition of Mehul Choksi, allows him legal access


New Delhi: A court in Dominica has extended the stay on the extradition of fugitive diamantaire Mehul Choksi from Dominica. 

The Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC) on Friday (May 28) restrained Dominican authorities from removing Choksi from the Commonwealth of Dominica until further notice. The court has set June 2 as the next date of hearing. 

The court, while hearing the diamantaire’s habeas corpus petition, put an injunction restraining the respondents whether by themselves, servants, agents and/or representatives from removing the applicant from the Commonwealth of Dominica until further hearing on the matter, ANI reported. 

Further, the court allowed the businessman to meet his legal counsel and be transported to a hospital for medical attention as well as get a COVID-19 test. 

Restricting media coverage of the matter, the court order read, “There shall be no publication or discussion or notification of the press regarding this matter without leave or permission of the court.”

On Thursday, Choksi’s legal team had filed a habeas corpus petition in Dominica and claimed he was deprived of access to legal assistance there. 

Wayne Marsh, Choksi’s lawyer in Dominica, alleged that his client was ‘severely beaten’ and was ‘abducted’ in Antigua and taken to Dominica. Further, he said they were denied access to their client and it was only on May 27 that he was allowed to speak to Choksi.

Choksi’s lawyer Vijay Aggarwal claimed that the Gitanjali group chairman was picked up by various people, ‘forced’ to get into a vessel from Antigua and then was taken to Dominica. He alleged there are ‘marks of torture’ on Choksi’s body. 

Earlier, in an exclusive interview with WION on Wednesday (May 26), Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda Gaston Browne had said that Mehul Choksi could be sent back to India in the next 48 hours from Dominica where he was captured while ‘trying to flee’.

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