Former Scotch owner bailed
Indian business tycoon Mallya arrested
Indian tycoon Vijay Mallya, who once owned the whisky company Whyte & Mackay, was arrested yesterday on suspicion of fraud.
He was bailed on security of £650,000 after appearing at Westminster Magistrates’ Court and a case management hearing was scheduled for 17 May.
The Metropolitan Police’s extradition unit said he had been held “on behalf of the Indian authorities in relation to accusations of fraud”.
Mr Mallya faces charges of financial irregularities at his defunct Kingfisher Airlines. He is said to owe banks £600 million but denies wrongdoing.
He was once described as India’s answer to Richard Branson with interests in a number of sectors.
Mr Mallya built a billion pound fortune through his Kingfisher brand before expanding into Formula 1 racing, drinks and sport.
He is the co-owner of the F1 team Force India and owns the Indian Premier League cricket franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore.
His airline was grounded in 2012 after five years of losses and finally collapsed after lenders refused to give it fresh loans.
Mr Mallya’s United Spirits bought Whyte & Mackay in 2007 for £595 million and sold it in 2014 to Philippines-based brandy producer Emperador for £430m
He was forced to offload the brand for antitrust reasons after Diageo bought a controlling stake in USL.