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CBI records statements of SEBI officials

The CBI has recorded statements of officials of stock market regulator SEBI in the case pertaining to the multi-crore rupee accounting fraud in Satyam Computer. A CBI team in Mumbai examined the documents available with the market regulator regarding the share transactions of the IT firm, official sources said. The probe team also recorded statements of officials of leading financial management and advisory firm DSP Merrill Lynch in connection with the fudging of the account books in the scam.

The firm was appointed by the board headed by former Satyam Chairman B Ramalinga Raju following the aborted Satyam-Maytas deal, to look for a strategic partner along with a plan to increase shareholder value. However, DSP Merrill Lynch snapped its engagement with Satyam soon after the disclosure of the accounting fraud at the IT firm. The CBI is trying to understand the share transactions of the Satyam group of companies on the National Stock Exchange and the Bombay Stock Exchange, officials said.

Officials sources said the modus operandi used by the accused involved generating fake invoices, further showing the imaginary money as being pumped into the financial system, and declaring profit that was never there. The CBI had filed a 300-page chargesheet against nine people, including the company's tainted founder B Ramalinga Raju and his two brothers at a special court in Hyderabad. The accused have been chargesheeted under various sections of the IPC including criminal conspiracy, cheating, forgery of valuable security, forgery for the purpose of cheating, using forged documents as genuine, falsification of accounts, and causing disappearance of evidence.

The others named in the chargesheet include the company's former CFO Vadlamani Srinivas, Vice-President (Finance) G Ramakrishna, and two employees D Venkatpathi Raju and Srisailam, both in the finance wing. The chargesheet has also named two sacked auditors of Price Waterhouse -- S Gopalakrishnan and Talluri Srinivas. The CBI, after registering the case on February 20, had formed a multi-disciplinary investigation team (MDIT) to probe the scam involving thousands of crores of rupees.

Source: Hindustan Times


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