Fugitive Jeweller Mehul Choksi Caught Dramatically After Boat Escape

By Shivika Sinha

When the Punjab National Bank’s loan fraud case was brought to light, one name that came up was that of a diamond merchant, Mehul Choksi. He had fled to Caribbean island nation of Antigua and Barbuda in 2018 after the fraud case was revealed. He was captured from Dominica while trying to flee to Cuba on a boat! The 62 year old fugitive’s disappearance was noticed when efforts to extradite him were made from CBI and the Enforcement Directorate. 

The loan fraud case involved over 14,000 crore rupees at India’s 2nd largest state owned bank, PNB. After being on the run for over 2 years, he is finally caught and the process of handing him over to the Antigua authorities has started effective immediately. CBI sources have also made it clear that his attempt to flee will only make their case stronger in antiguan courts which will ensure that he is brought back to India and is given his punishment. 

Initially there was no confirmation of Mehul missing from Antigua. However, after his family reported him missing, a hunt for the fleeing fugitive began. The island nation’s prime minister Browne had said “Mr. Choksi has 2 cases against him in Antiguan courts which are extradition and revocation of citizenship. He had brought a well known lawyer from the UK that indicated he was willing to stay and contest the cases against him.


Mr. Choksi’s lawyer. Advocate Vijay Aggarwal denied any claims saying that he was attempting to flee the country. He said “ the family is worried about his safety. We are keeping a watch on developments.” Mehul Choksi had been absconding from India since 2018 with his nephew, celebrity jeweller Nirav Modi after the bank loan fraud had surfaced.   

Two months after the scam unfolded, it became known that choksi had taken up citizenship in Antigua. However, choksi claims that the cases against him are a result of political conspiracy. He also said that all his houses and properties in India were illegally attached by the ED.   

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