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ED files money laundering case against YouTuber Elvish Yadav, others

LUCKNOW: The Enforcement Directorate has filed a money laundering case against YouTuber Siddharth Yadav alias Elvish Yadav and some others under the charge of suspected use of snake venom as a recreational drug in parties he hosted, official sources said Saturday.

The central agency has pressed charges under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) after taking cognisance of a FIR and charge sheet filed by the Gautam Buddh Nagar (Noida) district police in Uttar Pradesh last month against him and others linked to him.

The alleged generation of proceeds of crime and use of illicit funds for organising rave or recreational parties is under the scanner of the ED.

Yadav and some others linked to the case will be questioned as part of the investigation, the sources said.

Yadav was arrested on March 17 by the Noida Police in connection with its probe into the suspected use of snake venom as a recreational drug in parties that were allegedly hosted by him.

The 26-year-old YouTuber, also the winner of the reality show Bigg Boss OTT 2, was booked under various sections of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act, Wildlife Protection Act, and the Indian Penal Code (IPC) by the Noida police.

Yadav was among the six people named in an FIR lodged at Noida's Sector 49 Police Station on November 3 last year on a complaint from a representative of animal rights NGO People for Animals (PFA).

The five other accused, all snake charmers, were arrested in November and were later let out on bail by a local court.

The five snake charmers were arrested from a banquet hall in Noida on November 3 last year and nine snakes, including five cobras, were rescued from their possession, while 20 ml of suspected snake venom was also seized.

According to police, Yadav was not present at the banquet hall then.

In April, the Noida Police filed an over 1,200-page charge sheet in the case.

The charges included snake trafficking, use of psychotropic substances and organising rave parties, the police had said.


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