The High Court of Orissa, while refusing to grant bail to a person accused of involvement in money laundering said that the offence of money-laundering is nothing but an act of financial terrorism that poses a serious threat not a financial system of the country but also to the integrity and sovereignty of a nation.
The High court refused to grant bail to a person accused of involvement in money laundering after unauthorised deposit collection through attractive schemes with a rogue mindset by M/s. Fine Indisales Pvt. Ltd.
The Court gave vent to its concern about such offences as they are done in an exotic fashion encompassing a series of actions by the proverbial renting of credibility from the innocent investors.
Justice SK Panigrahi said, “this sort of economic demonology at the hands of M/s. Fine Indisales Pvt. Ltd, its directors and shareholders have been instrumental in making a windfall gain of about Rs 703 crore, as revealed from their own records.”
The modus operandi adopted while transferring such prodigious sum of ill-gotten wealth with the singular intention of concealing the original source of funds and to project the tainted money as untainted ex facie constitute the offence of money laundering, he said.
Justice Panigrahi said that the abuse of the financial system, like in the instant case, has great potential to negatively impact a country’s macroeconomic performance and may also adversely impact its cross-border externalities. Further, such actions by the petitioner can inflict reputational damage of the country in the world of business and commerce both inside the country and abroad.
The perpetrators of such deviant schemes, including the petitioner herein, who promise utopia to their unsuspecting investors seem to have entered in a proverbial Faustian bargain and are grossly unmindful of untold miseries of the faceless multitudes who are left high and dry and consigned to the flames of suffering, he said.
The offences, such as this, are committed with a deliberate design with an eye on personal profit and often shown to be given scant regard for a sordid residuum left behind to be borne by the unfortunate starry-eyed petty investors. The offenders often target the unsuspecting, rural and economically distressed populations of our state who while hoping for a dreamy return, part with their hard-earned money, the HC added.
It quoted an International Monetary Fund estimate, which said laundered money generates about $590 billion to $1.5 trillion per year, which constitutes approximately two to five per cent of the world’s gross domestic product.