London: Wanted diamond merchant Nirav Modi, whose extradition to India was ordered in April by UK Home Secretary Priti Patel in the estimated $2-billion Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam case, has lost the first stage of his extradition appeal in the high court here.

The appeal was before a high court judge for a decision on the papers submitted for the appeal to determine if there are any grounds for an appeal against the Home Secretary’s decision or the Westminster Magistrate’s Court February ruling in favour of Nirav Modi’s extradition to India to face charges of fraud and money laundering.

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A High Court official confirmed that the permission to appeal was “rejected on paper” on Tuesday, which leaves the 50-year-old Nirav Modi with a chance to make his case at a brief oral hearing in the High Court with a renewed leave to appeal application for a judge to determine if it can proceed to a full appeal hearing.



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