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USA Indian-American, others charged for corruption, bribery

Discussion in 'Breaking News' started by rajneesh madhok, Nov 20, 2010.

  1. rajneesh madhok

    rajneesh madhok India
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    Jan 1, 2010
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    WASHINGTON: US investigators, who arrested an Indian-American couple on charges of bribing government officials, have seized an estimated $400,000 hidden inside a closet in their home.

    Owner of a number of liquor stores in Langley Park and surrounding neighbourhoods in Maryland, Amrik Melhi, 51, and his wife, Ravinder K Melhi, 49, were arrested by FBI on charges of bribing government officials in exchange of favours.

    Besides the Melhi couple, seven others including three police officials have been arrested on corruption charges.

    "Police officers are given badges and guns to prevent crimes, but these police officers allegedly used them to commit crimes," said US Attorney Rod J Rosenstein.

    "The indictment charges that they crossed a bright line from catching criminals to conspiring with criminals," he said.

    The indictment unsealed early this week charges that the defendants agreed that Amrik Singh Melhi and others would pay police officers in exchange for them using their official authority to ensure the safe transport and distribution of untaxed cigarettes and alcohol in Maryland and Virginia.

    The indictment also seeks the forfeiture of $3.5 million, 25 properties, 13 vehicles and 84 bank accounts that allegedly are proceeds of crimes or were used to facilitate crimes.

    The defendants in the extortion conspiracy case face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

    According to The Washington Post, the Melhis have gone to great lengths to hide their assets - including by sending people they know to India with large amounts of cash hidden under their clothes.

    Amrik Melhi also smuggled people into the United States illegally through Mexico, using false documents, according to the charges.

    In the late 1980s, Amrik Melhi was sentenced to five years in prison in South Carolina after he was found guilty of paying a prostitute $5,000 to marry him in an effort to obtain citizenship.

    Both Melhis are in the country legally, the daily said.

    Read more: Indian-American, others charged for corruption, bribery - The Times of India http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...bribery/articleshow/6959591.cms#ixzz15pTIHwey

    Rajneesh Madhok
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