Footballer Barreto allowed to travel abroad

Calcutta HC has allowed Brazilian footballer Jose Ramirez Barreto to travel out of India for six weeks.

updated: April 23, 2008 12:26 IST
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Calcutta High Court on Wednesday allowed Brazilian footballer Jose Ramirez Barreto, arrested at the Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International (NSCBI) airport last month for carrying undeclared cash, to travel out of India for six weeks.

Justice Asim Kumar Roy directed Barreto to furnish a bank guarantee of Rs.1.5 million and a bond of Rs.10,000 as a condition to reclaim his passport from the lower court. He was also asked to come back to India within six weeks.

The High Court asked the 31-year-old Brazilian striker to re-deposit his passport to the Barasat Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) court in Kolkata's adjoining North 24-Parganas district within two day of his return.

A senior Mohun Bagan Club official, Anjan Mitra, was the guarantor for Barreto.

The footballer was arrested at the airport here March 20 on the charge of travelling with excess foreign exchange totalling $20,500. He was arrested under the Customs Act prior to his boarding a Dubai-bound flight enroute to Brazil.

Barreto was allowed to travel abroad by a West Bengal lower court April 7 on condition that he had to appear before the court May 25 to facilitate legal proceedings.

Later, customs officials filed a revision petition in the Calcutta High Court last week, claiming that the district sessions judge did not have the authority to order the release of Barreto's passport.

Barreto, who plays for India's premier Mohun Bagan club, enjoys an iconic status in Kolkata. He reportedly gets Rs.6 million annually, making him the highest paid overseas footballer.