Embraer Deal: CBI issue look-out notice against defence agent Khanna

The deal for the three aircraft, which were to be used by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) for air-borne radar systems, was inked with Embraer in 2008.
Embraer Deal

The Central Bureau of Investigation on Friday issued a look-out circular against NRI defence consultant Vipin Khanna in connection with the $210-million Embraer aircraft deal. A look-out circular prevents an accused from leaving the country.

The investigative agency had named Khanna in its First Information Report, saying that Khanna got kickbacks from the Brazilian company to the tune of $5.76 million (Rs 38.5 crore approximately) for the defence deal in 2009, reported The Indian Express.

The CBI had investigated 87-year-old Khanna and impounded his passport in 2006 in connection with another scam that also involved his son Aditya. The agency registered the FIR in the Embraer case on September 18, after submitting its preliminary inquiry report on September 16. The case came to light in September.

The last time Vipin Khanna was being probed by Indian agencies was in 2006 following the oil-for-food scandal when his son, Aditya Khanna, was named as the main beneficiary of the contracts and his ( passport remained impounded for a long period, reported the English newspaper.

The PTI source, according to the report, said the kickbacks were allegedly paid in 2009 through subsidiaries of Embraer via a Singapore-based company which is owned by the middleman. It is alleged that payoffs were routed through Austria and Switzerland.

The agency, which had registered a preliminary inquiry in September, has converted it into a regular FIR as enough prima facie material has been found by it to proceed in the case.

The deal for three aircraft which were to be used by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) for air-borne radar systems was inked in 2008 with Embraer.

A Brazilian newspaper had alleged that that the company had taken the services of middlemen to clinch deals in Saudi Arabia and India.

The Brazilian company has been under investigation by the US Justice Department since 2010 when a contract with the Dominican Republic raised the Americans’ suspicions, the report said. Since then, the investigation has widened to examine business dealings with eight more countries.