Sinha, who was in Rome last week to attend a conference on human trafficking organised by London's Metropolitan Police, held a meeting with Basant Kumar Gupta, Indian Ambassador to Italy, and discussed ways to fastrack the agency probe in the deal, official sources said today.
The CBI Director pressed for early execution of the agency's judicial request (Letters Rogatory) to Italy seeking certain information on the accused and companies named in its FIR, they said. Both discussed ways and means for better coordination with the Italian authorities to secure crucial information sought by the agency in its judicial request, the sources said.
Former chief of Indian Air Force (IAF) S P Tyagi and about a dozen others have been named in the FIR registered by CBI on March 13, last year, to probe the deal. Tyagi cousins--Sanjeev, alias Julie, Rajeev, alias Docsa, and Sandeep, European middlemen Carlo Gerosa, Christian Michel and Guido Haschke have also been named in the FIR as accused.
The top executives of Italian firm Finmeccanica and its United Kingdom-based subsidiary AgustaWestland are facing trial in Italy for alleged corruption in supply of 12 VVIP helicopters to India.
CBI had in its LR sought to record the statements of Giuseppe Orsi and Bruno Spagnolini, former and current Chief Executives of AgustaWestland respectively, who are facing trial in Italy.
Orsi was heading AgustaWestland when the deal was signed in 2010 and is now the Chief Executive Officer of parent company Finmeccanica.
The statements of Orsi and Spagnolini are important for CBI for finalising its charge sheet, the agency sources said.
According to the CBI FIR, "Haschke Guido and Gerosa Carlo (middlemen) managed to send Euro 5.6 million through Mohali-based IDS Infotech and Chandigarh-based Aeromatrix Info Solutions Private Ltd to India and kept the remaining amount out of about Euro 24.30 million received from AgustaWestland with themselves in the account of IDS Tunisia."
Six companies, including Italy-based Finmeccanica, Agusta-Westland, Mohali-based IDS Infotech, Chandigarh based Aeromatrix, IDS Tunisia and IDS Mauritius, had also been booked by the CBI in its FIR. Both the Indian companies have denied involvement in the bribery scandal.