Agusta deal: Gautam Khaitan admits middlemen paid him, says CBI

Khaitan, who allegedly used to route the bribe amount, is named in the CBI FIR as one of the accused.

NEW DELHI: The CBI on Thursday claimed that former board member of Aeromatrix Gautam Khaitan has accepted taking payments from Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa, middlemen in the Agusta Westland Chopper deal, but rejected allegations that it was part of any kickbacks.

“He has agreed that he took payment from European middlemen Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa. However, we do not agree with the purpose behind the payment which has been cited by him,” CBI sources said.

Khaitan and former Deputy Air Chief N.V. Tyagi were examined by CBI in connection with the copter deal here on Thursday, sources said. While the questioning of Khaitan continued for about 10 hours, Tyagi left within four hours after recording his statement before the investigators.

Sources said while Khaitan accepted money was received from Gerosa and Haschke, he denied that it was part of kick backs to clinch the deal. The sources said former air chief S.P. Tyagi’s cousins — Sandeep, Sanjeev, Rajeev — will be called on Friday for questioning. The three brothers are named in the CBI FIR.

Khaitan, who is an advocate and a former Board member of company Aeromatrix which was allegedly used to route bribe amount, is named in the CBI FIR as one of the accused.

The focus of the questioning was his alleged links with Italian middlemen — Carlo Gerosa and Guido Haschke, sources said. The CBI had also registered a case against former air chief S.P. Tyagi along with 13 others including his cousins.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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