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Money laundering case: Zakir Naik's 'aide' granted bail


Mumbai: A special court here Friday granted bail to Abdul Sathak, an aide of Islamic preacher Zakir Naik, arrested for allegedly helping the latter with money laundering.

Special PMLA court judge M S Azmi granted bail to Sathak on a surety of Rs 5,00,000.

Sathak, a jeweller, was arrested last month under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

He is accused of helping Naik by transferring "funds of dubious origin from the UAE (United Arab Emirates) to facilitate production and broadcasting of incriminating videos for spreading communal hatred and radicalisation of a particular community".

While granting bail, the court laid down certain conditions, like he shall make himself available for probe as and when called by the investigating officer. Also, he must not leave India without the permission of the court and surrender his passport with the Enforcement Directorate (ED), Mumbai, within a week.

In his bail plea, Sathak said that there was nothing to show that he "acquired or dealt with any property" obtained through crime. He also claimed to be suffering from myasthenia gravis, a long-term neuromuscular disease.

The ED has alleged that Sathak sent about Rs 50 crore to Naik, which the latter illegally routed and laundered.

Sathak was the director of Global Broadcasting Corporation FZE LLC that owned Naik's Peace TV channel, it said.

The central agency alleged that Global Broadcasting was "controlled" by Naik (who is stated to be in Malaysia now), through Sathak, his "trusted aide".

Naik has been under investigation since 2016, when the Centre banned his Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) for five years. The controversial preacher is accused of inciting youth to take up terror activities, giving hate speeches and promoting enmity between communities.

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