Former Finmeccanica CEO Giuseppe Orsi acquitted by Italian court in AgustaWestland chopper case


An Italian appeals court on Monday acquitted two former Leonardo executives in AgustaWestland chopper scam case, reported news agency Reuters.


These two executives are Giuseppe Orsi, former chief executive of the state-controlled defence group, formerly known as Finmeccanica, and Bruno Spagnolini, once at the head of helicopter unit AgustaWestland. Both were exonerated of charges due to insufficient proof.

In December 2016, Italy’s highest court had ordered a re-trial of the case, after the former executives of the Rome-based group were found guilty on corruption charges related to a 560 million euros ($672 million) contract to supply a dozen helicopters to New Delhi.

The news came in even as the Enforcement Directorate in Delhi told a court that a director of two Dubai-based firms had been “non-cooperative” and evading probe in a money laundering case connected with the Rs 3,600-crore VVIP chopper deal.

The probe agency was opposing the plea of Rajeev Saxena, one of the directors of M/s UHY Saxena and M/s Matrix Holdings, seeking cancellation of the non-bailable warrant (NBW) issued against him by the court last year.

During the arguments before Special Judge Arvind Kumar, special public prosecutor N K Matta, appearing for ED, said Saxena has not joined the probe despite repeated summons, reported PTI.

AgustaWestland deal is involves alleged corruption in the purchase of 2 AW101 helicopters for the Indian Air Force for Rs 3,600 crore. The purpose of this deal was to have chopppers fly VVIPs like the president, prime minister and others.




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