Mallya convicted of cheque bouncing

It’s official. Vijay Mallya is a criminal. The former chairman of Diageo-controlled United Spirits was convicted by a Hyderabad court yesterday of bouncing cheques issued by his collapsed Kingfisher Airlines.

Vijay Mallya (Photo: Wiki)

Vijay Mallya (Photo: Wiki)

Following the issue of an arrest warrant against him on behalf of India’s Enforcement Directorate (ED) for three failures to appear to answer allegations of improper use of bank loans, a second non-bailable warrant was issued by the Hyderabad court. It has delayed sentencing until May 5.

Mallya, who is believed to be in Britain, denies misuse of loans to the airline. Prosecutors allege that he diverted funds to purchase property abroad.

He also faces allegations that money was diverted from USL when under his control in attempts to prop up the airline.

Last month creditor banks rejected a settlement plan proposed by Mallya, in which he planned to repay about $600m of the $1.3billion debts run up by KIngfisher.

The ED has given Mallya until tomorrow to offer reasons why it should not permanently revoke and withdraw his diplomatic passport which he holds as a member of India’s Senate.

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