New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Monday said it has taken possession of immovable assets worth Rs 40.23 lakh of a Bihar-based Maoist and his family as part of a money laundering investigation against him.

The action has been taken against Rambabu Ram an active member of the banned CPI (Maoist) and secretary of the western zonal committee (north Bihar). He is also known by his aliases Rajan, Prahar and Nikhil.

The agency said in a statement that the properties were provisionally attached in March last year and after the Adjudicating Authority of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) confirmed the action in September, it was empowered to take possession.

The ED said the Naxal leader “with a criminal history of 20 years” carries a reward of Rs 5 lakh — announced by the Bihar government — and it had to face “strong resistance” from Rambabu Ram’s family members and villagers while taking possession of the attached immovable assets located in the East Champaran district of the state.

The ED booked Rambabu Ram after taking cognisance of at least 28 FIRs and multiple charge sheets filed against him by the Bihar Police on charges of murder, attempt to murder, criminal conspiracy, conspiracy to commit offences, dacoity, robbery, collection of levy and extortion from various ongoing development work in Bihar.

The taken over assets include various pieces of land and house in the name of his wife, mother, brother and brother-in-law and their total value is Rs 40.23 lakh. The agency said the accused had “invested the proceeds of crime for acquiring various immovable properties in the name of his family members, so as to project them as untainted.”