Lok Sabha passes Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill 2018 to attach & confiscate assets of defaulters
During the monsoon session of Parliament, the Lok Sabha passed the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill 2018, which will empower authorities to attach and confiscate properties and assets of economic offenders like loan defaulters & fraudsters who flee the country. The bill will replace an ordinance promulgated by President Ram Nath Kovind in April 2018. It is expected to re-establish the rule of law as the accused will be forced to return to India and face trial for his offences. The bill proposes the formation of a special court under the Prevention of Money-laundering Act 2002 (PMLA) to declare a person a Fugitive Economic Offender (FEO). A FEO is a person against whom an arrest warrant has been issued in respect of a scheduled offence and who has left India so as to avoid criminal prosecution, or being abroad, refuses to return to India to face criminal prosecution. The cases where the total value involved in such scheduled offences is Rs 100 crore or more, will come under its purview.