The Special PMLA (The Prevention of Money Laundering Act) Court on Monday extended the Enforcement Directorate (ED) remand of former Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren by three days in a money laundering case linked to an alleged land scam. The JMM leader was on February 7 remanded to ED custody by a special PMLA (the Prevention of Money Laundering Act) court in Ranchi for five days.
Earlier during the day, the former CM was produced before the Court amid heavy security. Hemant Soren was arrested on the night of January 31 after a seven-hour grilling by the ED in the money laundering case. He resigned as the Chief Minister before that.
Earlier, the ED claimed it had recovered cash in excess of Rs 36 lakh from the possession of the JMM chief, along with documents linked to the ongoing investigation into the alleged acquisition of land by ‘fraudulent means’. The agency added that land parcels spanning 8.5 acres were part of the criminal proceeds that the former CM allegedly acquired. ED stated that in a raid conducted on April 13, 2023, they unearthed several property-related records and registers that were in the possession of Revenue Sub-Inspector Bhanu Pratap Prasad.
It informed further that the probe further revealed that Bhanu Pratap Prasad and others are part of a “very large syndicate involved in corrupt practices of acquiring properties forcefully as well as on the basis of false deeds. “Considering the facts and circumstances and taking into consideration the activities and processes of money laundering in which Soren is directly involved and is also a party with the said Bhanu Pratap and others, there are sufficient reasons to believe that Soren is guilty of the offence of money laundering as per section 3 of PMLA 2002,” the agency stated.
The investigation relates to the allegedly forged official records used by “fake sellers” and “fake purchasers” to purchase sizable land parcels with a value in crores.