On 4th December 2018, British national, Christian James Michel, was extradited to India from the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Mr Michel is accused by Indian authorities of acting as the middleman in an Indian helicopter bribery scandal. The Central Bureau of Intelligence (CBI) allege that Mr Michel was hired by AgustaWestland, a helicopter manufacturer, to influence potential buyers, including politicians, officials and journalists. He is accused of working with two other men, Carlo Gerosa and Guido Haschke, who allegedly bribed potential buyers to secure the deal for AgustaWestland. The CBI has alleged that Mr Michel’s companies received Rs 295 crore (£33m) from Finmeccnica, the parent company of AgustaWestland. You can read more about Mr Michel’s arrest and the allegations against him in our previous blog here.
Since his arrest, Mr Michel has claimed that he was forced to sign a confession by the CBI and that he was promised a waiver in the case if he signed. The CBI denies the allegations.
On 12 January 2019, an anonymous source reported to The Sunday Telegraph that Mr Michel was extradited in an agreement which saw Princess Sheikha Latifa returned to the UAE. Princess Latifa is the daughter of Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President of Dubai. She initially left Dubai last year and was captured by Indian authorities in her yacht off of the coast of Goa.