BHOPAL: Crime branch police have arrested a couple for duping people promising hefty returns on investment in their firm. The couple swindled Rs 60 lakh from their five Bhopal-based investors. 

The couple, who were arrested in Jalandhar on Sunday, were brought here on Wednesday. SI Ghanshyam Dangi said the accused husband and wife would befriend the victims in their neighbourhood. They would identify the victim’s status from their house and expenses and would lure them.

The accused Manish Sharma and his wife Manisha Sharma, residents of Jalandhar , had come to Bhopal in January and took a rented accommodation in Katara Hills. They operated their illegal business here in the state capital for two months and after amassing over Rs 60 lakh left for Jalandhar before the lockdown.

SI Ghanshyam Dangi said the accused couple would befriend the businessmen and service class people residing in their area and lured them to invest in their firm offering heavy returns. They would identify the victim’s status from their house and expenses and then target them. The Sharma couple promised to double their amount in a span of six months.

Clueless of their designs, the people invested huge amount in their firm. However, as soon as the couple got the amount they disappeared. The dup even deleted their social media accounts.

On receiving complaints, the crime branch police traced the couple to Jalandhar and laid a solid plan to trap them. To nab the couple, a team of police went to Jalandhar in the guise of employees of a private firm looking for a house on rent.  The cops stayed in a house next door as tenants, and kept an eye on the accused. On Sunday, the cops arrested the couple as they came to their house. The accused were staying in another place and would only visit their house once or twice a week. The duo had started working with a private firm in Jalandhar and to escape police dragnet, they left their house and took up accommodation elsewhere. 

The fraudsters amassed huge amount by cheating people and managed to construct a house in Jalandhar.  In a span of two months, the couple had allegedly duped five residents of Bhopal. They convenience them of investing money in their firm, while the minimum amount invested by them was Rs 5 lakh each, the maximum went to as high as Rs 23 lakh. The total amount the couple had swindled is Rs 60 lakh.

The cops have so far recovered Rs 12 lakh cash and also seized their four wheeler. The cops have informed the concerned authorities about their properties and assets worth over Rs 60 lakh.

Some of the complainants told police that they liquidated their FDs to invest in their firm, while some had taken loans from their relatives hoping they would get a good return.

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