Fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya has consulted Clare Montgomery, the Queen’s Counsel (QC), to fight against Indian government's attempt to extradite him to India. The Business Standard reported that Montgomery will most likely defend Mallya at the hearings in British courts.
Matrix Chambers, a barristers’ chambers located in London and Geneva, describes the QC who specialises in criminal, regulatory and fraud law as: "Clare has had extensive experience in extradition, international mutual legal assistance and international criminal law, representing both governments and individuals. She works with lawyers outside the UK on national and international criminal cases assisting with strategy and legal challenges."
Ranked in 2017 by Chambers & Partners, Legal 500, Montgomery has also been described as, "One of the finest minds at the Bar,” “a brilliant mind, an amazingly quick thinker, but nonetheless very approachable,” "the most formidable member of the bar." She has not only been admitted in Northern Ireland and specially admitted in the courts of the Bahamas, Bermuda, Brunei, Hong Kong, Mauritius and the Turks and Caicos Islands but has also received several awards. She was named 'Crime Silk of the Year' in 2005, 2013 and she was nominated twice as 'Lawyer’s Barrister of the Year'.
In an interview with First 100 Years, Montgomery said: "Frankly, the number of cases which I’ve transformed from losing cases to winning cases I can count on the fingers of one hand. High profile cases can present a particular danger to the barrister because of the press, and responding to scrutiny takes your focus off convincing the jury, the court, or the judges."
Montgomery also appeared for the Swedish Judicial Authority in the Wikileaks founder Julian Assange extradition case.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court of India has directed the Union Home Ministry to "secure and ensure" the presence of Mallya, who is currently in the United Kingdom, before it on 10 July for the hearing on the quantum of punishment for contempt of court.
The top court has held Mallya guilty of contempt of court for disobeying its orders by not disclosing full particulars of his assets and also violating the orders of Karnataka High Court by transferring $40 million received from British firm Diageo, to his three children.
India had recently asked Britain to ensure early extradition of Mallya, who is an accused in a bank loan default case of over Rs 9,000 crore involving his defunct Kingfisher Airlines. With Montgomery's stellar credentials, it won't be easy for the Indian government to bring back Mallya.
"We direct the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, New Delhi to secure and ensure presence of Mallya before this court on 10 July, 2017. A copy of this judgment be sent to the Ministry of Home Affairs for compliance," a bench of Justices Adarsh Kumar Goel and Uday Umesh Lalit said.
With inputs from PTI
Updated Date: May 10, 2017 16:56 PM