Mumbai: A 34-year-old man was recently duped by a gang of scamsters to the tune of Rs 23.25 lakh. The accused contacted the victim posing as police officers, claiming that his parcel to the US, containing 50 passports and credit cards, had been intercepted and he was threatened with arrest in a money laundering case. They even shared a bogus arrest warrant with him. Frightened, the victim sold his shares, dipped into his bank deposits and withdrew PPF money; he also borrowed money from friends and availed of personal loans to pay the fraudsters.
According to the police, the complainant, a resident of Koparkhairane, had received a call from a person claiming to be calling from Customs. The caller informed him that his parcel destined for the US had passports and credit cards. The victim was then made to speak to a person in police uniform over a Skype call. He was told his name was among 114 others on a list of those involved in cases of human trafficking and money laundering.
Accused Shared Bogus Arrest Warant To Threaten Victim
The scammers then told the victim that someone had used his Aadhaar and PAN card details to open a bank account. The accused also shared a bogus arrest warrant and property attachment documents with the victim. Even when the victim said he had nothing to do with the case, the scammers told him that he would have to deposit his assets with the government for investigation purposes. From October 12 to November 3, the scammers induced the victim to pay them Rs 23.25 lakh in 15 different transactions into a bank account, the details provided to him.
Later, only when the accused stopped communicating with him, did the victim realise he had been duped. He then approached the police and got an offence registered in the matter. Police have registered a case under sections 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention), 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property), 466 (forgery of record of court or of public register, etc), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating), 471 (using as genuine a forged document or electronic record), 473 (making or possessing counterfeit seal, etc., with intent to commit forgery punishable otherwise) of the Indian Penal Code and section 66D (cheating by impersonation by using computer resource) of the Information Technology Act.