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Raj Kundra anticipated arrest in alleged porn case, changed phone: Report

Raj Kundra's police custody in connection with the pornography racket case will end on Tuesday.
By hindustantimes.com | Written by Meenakshi Ray
PUBLISHED ON JUL 27, 2021 08:41 AM IST
Raj Kundra was arrested by the Mumbai Police late on July 19 along with 10 other people on charges related to the alleged creation of pornographic films. (File Photo)

Raj Kundra was anticipating his arrest after the Mumbai Police arrested nine people in connection with the pornography racket case in March, news agency ANI has reported citing people familiar with the matter. Kundra had also readied a 'Plan B' to dodge investigation in the pornography case, the people cited by ANI said.

The 45-year-old businessman also changed his phone in March so that data from the device could not be recovered, the people cited by ANI said. "When crime branch officials asked him about his old phone, he told them he threw it away," ANI quoted an official as saying. "Police believe that the old phone contains many important pieces of evidence and is looking for it."

ANI also said that Mumbai Police's crime branch has appointed a financial auditor to probe the money trail of Raj Kundra and Shilpa Shetty and their alleged involvement in the pornography racket case.

"In the investigation, the crime branch has found transactions worth crores were done from the joint account of Shilpa Shetty and Raj Kundra. The crime branch suspects that the earnings from Hotshots and Bolly Fame apps used to come into this account," officials told ANI.

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Mumbai Police are also investigating whether the money earned from the apps was being invested in bitcoins.

Also read | Gujarat trader files cheating plaint against Raj Kundra’s firm

Raj Kundra was arrested by the Mumbai Police late on July 19 along with 10 other people on charges related to the alleged creation of pornographic films. Kundra has been named as the "key conspirator" by the Mumbai Police and charged him under Sections 420 (cheating), 34 (common intention), 292 and 293 (related to obscene and indecent advertisements and displays) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) along with other sections of the IT Act and the Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act.

The police custody of Raj Kundra and Ryan Thorpe will end on Tuesday, and ANI reported citing people familiar with the development as saying that the crime branch will seek an extension in the court.

Also read | Raj Kundra may now face charges of money laundering, foreign exchange violation

The Bombay High Court will hear Raj Kundra's plea challenging his police custody and seeking bail on Tuesday in connection with the pornography racket case.

Kundra may also face charges of money laundering and violating foreign exchange rules with the Enforcement Directorate (ED) likely to register cases under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA).

(With ANI inputs)

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