Controversial businessman and owner of a tabloid in Madhya Pradesh, wanted for seven months in more than 40 cases, including rape and human trafficking, was arrested on Sunday in neighboring Gujarat, announced the police.
Jeetu Soni, who had a bonus of Rs 1.6 lakh in his name and in cases of land grabbing, blackmail, rape, extortion and fraud, was arrested in his home district of Amreli, Gujarat, said a senior police officer.
Soni was an influential businessman who enjoyed the political patronage of Congress and the BJP in the state and had considerable influence over senior police officers.
However, he found himself without political favors after his tabloid published racy articles centered on a sex scandal that erupted in September last year and that involved senior advisers to Shivraj Singh Chouhan during his previous tenure as as chief minister who shook politics, bureaucratic and police circles of the state.
When the Congressional government was in power in the state last year, a dance bar, two bungalows, a hotel, and a restaurant among other Soni-owned properties were also raided by police and three of his properties have been demolished.
Five women and a man were arrested in the racket for allegedly blackmailing several influential people using sex tapes.
Earlier, state police seized more than 4,000 files from the laptops and cellphones of the accused arrested in the case.
According to sources, the audio recordings, video clips and screenshots of the conversations were used to blackmail bureaucrats, politicians and state businessmen.