ED seizes assets of Tamil Nadu-based smuggler Red Sanders

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Plots, houses and other assets worth a total of Rs 7.54 crore of a suspected Tamil Nadu-based Red Sanders timber smuggler and his family members have been seized under the Anti -money laundering, the ED said on Tuesday.

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The action was taken against R Selvaraj who the federal investigative agency called a “recidivist who engaged in illegal activities related to the smuggling of red sanders/sandalwood and other criminal activities” .

Adjoining assets include eight residential plots in Aathoor and Pudhu Erumaivettipalayam, Redhills, Tamil Nadu; six agricultural plots in Vallakkottai village of Sriperumbudur district; two houses located in Venus Colony, 2nd Street, Chennai and Krishna Nagar, Saram Revenue Village in Pondicherry and movable property worth Rs 2.07 crore in the name of Sanjana Metalware India Pvt. ltd.

The book value of these properties is Rs 2.74 crore while the current “market value” is around Rs 7.54 crore, he said.

A statement from the Directorate of Law Enforcement released in Chennai said that Selvaraj “has earned cash proceeds of crime over the years from these illegal activities.”

“He invested the money thus earned in real estate and in the form of paid up capital, unsecured loans etc. in his related company Sanjana Metalware India Pvt Ltd.”

“The investigation established that the said assets were illegally acquired from the proceeds of crime generated from the illegal activities related to the smuggling of red sanders/sandalwood and other criminal activities…” he declares.

Selvaraj was first booked for these activities by Andhra Pradesh Police (Chittoor District) and Chennai Customs Department, following which the ED filed a criminal case against him under the law. on the Prevention of Money Laundering (PMLA).

The two departments are also filing separate indictments against him, and although Selvaraj was “detained” under the Currency Safeguarding and Contraband Activity Prevention Act (COFEPOSA), he was also charged with have violated the Customs Law, the Wildlife Protection Law and the Biodiversity Law. and gun law, ED said.

Red Sanders is listed in Appendix II of CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) and its export from India is restricted in accordance with the country’s foreign trade policy.

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