ED arrests alleged human trafficker from Ranchi in money laundering case

A special PMLA court, on December 10, sent Panna Lal Mahto alias Ganjhu to 5-day ED custody, the agency noted in a statement.
Logo of the Enforcement Directorate (File photo)
Logo of the Enforcement Directorate (File photo)
Published on Dec 12, 2021 04:15 PM IST
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By, New Delhi

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) informed on Sunday it has arrested an alleged human trafficker from Jharkhand, as part of a money laundering investigation against him. The man, Panna Lal Mahto alias Ganjhu, is alleged to have trafficked more than 5000 people, the central agency said.

Detailing the arrest, the ED further stated that Mahto was arrested from state capital Ranchi’s Birsa Munda central jail, adding that after the arrest, a special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court, on December 10, sent him to its custody for five days.

“Mahto is a resident of Khunti district in Jharkhand, and was arrested by the state police in 2006 and 2015 for these alleged crimes. However, he managed to secure bail in all these cases,” the ED profiled him in a statement.

“He had multiple cases registered against him in Khunti, Ranchi and Delhi under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for offences such as kidnapping, trafficking etc. He has networks spread across Delhi, Jharkhand, Odisha and Chhattisgarh. In the national capital, Mahto had an agency under the name of Panna Lal Placement Agency,” the statement noted.

The alleged human trafficker, said the Enforcement Directorate, was found to have amassed ‘huge property’ in Jharkhand, Delhi and other states from activities related to human trafficking. Some immovable properties, in the form of land in Ranchi and Khuntia, were acquired out of the proceeds of the crime, it claimed.

The ED also accused Mahto of operating, along with his acquaintances, several bank accounts with a number of ‘high-value’ transactions. These transactions, it said, appear to have been acquired and transacted out of the proceeds of the crime.

(With PTI inputs)

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