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Nirav Modi Sold Fake Diamond Rings Worth Rs 1.4 cr to Canadian, Leading to His Breakup With Girlfriend

Absconding jeweller Nirav Modi allegedly sold two fake diamond rings to a Canadian man Paul Alfonso for US$200,000 in Hong Kong.

News18.com

Updated:October 8, 2018, 10:54 AM IST
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Nirav Modi Sold Fake Diamond Rings Worth Rs 1.4 cr to Canadian, Leading to His Breakup With Girlfriend
File photo of diamantaire Nirav Modi.
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New Delhi: A bogus business deal made by absconding Jeweller Nirav Modi to a Canadian national cost the latter US$200,000 (Rs 1.4 crore), his girlfriend and pushed him into depression.

Nirav, who is wanted in a multi-crore fraud at India’s Punjab National Bank, allegedly sold two fake diamond rings to a Canadian man Paul Alfonso for US$200,000 in Hong Kong.

The buyer, who reportedly had no clue about fraud charges on Nirav, bought the rings to propose to his girlfriend. But their celebration was cut short after the duo found out that the diamonds were fake, according to a report in the South China Morning Post.

Alfonso and Nirav first met in 2012 and again ran into each other in Malibu after a few months.  Alfonso said he found his association with Nirav “good” as he gave him a “pep talk” and was “kind of an older brother figure.”

In April this year, Alfonso sent an email to the diamond jeweller asking for a “special” engagement ring at the budget of US$100,000 to propose marriage to his girlfriend.

In response, Nirav offered a “perfect” 3.2-carat round brilliant diamond cut, D colour, VVS1 – a high-quality grade and colourless stone at US $120,000. “Thank you for thinking of me when you’re making one of the most meaningful purchases in any man’s life,” Nirav wrote after Alfonso approved the design.

Alfonso’s girlfriend, however, expressed interest in another design, prompting him to order a second ring – a 2.5 carat oval diamond for US$80,000 from Nirav. After Alfonso made payment for both rings to a Hong Kong account, he received the rings in June.

But in August, when Alfonso’s fiancée took the rings to an appraiser, the couple found that the diamonds were fake. “When she told me, I was like ‘That’s impossible. I spent US$200,000 on those rings. There’s no way they are fake. It’s Nirav we are talking about’,” Alfonso said.

Another rude shock followed when he found out about charges against Nirav and his bankrupt companies and loan defaults.

The incident led to breakup between the couple. “We broke up literally after one or two days … It was just too much for both of us to handle. It does not make sense to her, because she says: ‘You are a pretty smart guy, how did you let someone scam you out of US$200,000 without making sure the transaction was legitimate?’” said Alfonso, who slipped into depression soon after.

He has now filed an unlimited civil lawsuit against Nirav in California, suing him for US$4.2 million dollars.
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