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Tuesday, April 18, 2017, 22:08

Indian tycoon arrested in UK over fraud

By Agencies

Indian tycoon arrested in UK over fraud
Sahara Force India's owner Vijay Mallya attends the launch of the Sahara Force India Formula One car for the 2017 season, the VJM10, at the Silverstone motor racing circuit near Towcester, central England on Feb 22, 2017. ( OLI SCARFF / AFP)

MUMBAI/NEW DELHI - Indian businessman Vijay Mallya , who has been pursued by authorities over unpaid loans tied to his now defunct Kingfisher Airlines, was arrested in London on Tuesday, the Metropolitan Police said in a statement.

Mallya will be brought back to India. The government is working toward it. No one will be spared

Santosh Gangwar, India's junior minister for finance

Mallya, 61, was arrested on behalf of the Indian authorities in relation to accusations of fraud and will be presented in Westminster Magistrates Court later on Tuesday, the statement added.

India had asked Britain to extradite Mallya to face trial after the liquor and aviation tycoon fled there last March after banks sued to recover about $1.4 billion that Indian authorities say Kingfisher owes.

In New Delhi, the government hailed Mallya's arrest, saying it would not spare anyone who indulged in fraud.

"Mallya will be brought back to India. The government is working toward it. No one will be spared," said Santosh Gangwar, the junior minister for finance.

Mallya has repeatedly dismissed the charges against him and defended himself in messages from his personal account on social media network Twitter.

An India-based spokesman for Mallya's UB Group did not comment immediately.

READ M ORE: India's jet-set tycoons' fortunes take a dive

Indian television channel CNN News18 reported that Mallya was arrested by Scotland Yard and a team of Indian law enforcement officials would visit London to begin work on his extradition.

India's foreign ministry and its federal police, the Central Bureau of Investigation, were not immediately available for comment.

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