Software engineer held for fudging IMEI numbers of stolen mobiles and then selling them in the market
Mumbai : Three youngsters, including a software engineer, was arrested by the Mumbai crime branch for selling stolen mobile phones by changing their International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) numbers. The trio used a software called Flasher using which they replaced the IMEI numbers of the stolen phones with those of outdated phones and sold them.
The police have recovered 114 mobile phones worth Rs 4 lakh and 14 ‘flashers’ along with five hard disks from a mobile shop owned by Ashok Sant (24) and Tushar Rajput (26) in Borivali.
The matter came to light after the Mumbai police noticed a drastic drop in the recovery of lost phones for the last six months. The stolen phones are generally traced using the IMEI number behind each mobile phone. But the police were unable to trace the location of the mobile phones with the given IMEI numbers. It turned out that Tushar, a Bachelor in Computer Application (BCA), changed the IMEI numbers.
A police team was formed under Joint commissioner of Police (crime) Sadanand Date to look in the matter. On Wednesday, following a tip off, the police laid a trap near Orlem Church at Malad West and nabbed Sameer Shabuddin Bhayani. Seven mobile phones and several IMEI stickers were found on him.
The mobiles recovered from Bhayani had IMEI numbers that were not registered at the mobile company. Probing further, the police were led to Tushar Rajput (26) and Ashok Sant (24), who owned a mobile repairing shop at Borivali in Indraprasth Shopping Center. Mobile phones worth Rs 4 lakh were recovered from the shop.
Deputy Commissioner of Police Ambadas Pote said, “They have not developed the software themselves but instead purchased it from somewhere else. They have been doing it for the past six months, as it is an easy way to make money. Mobile phones worth Rs 5,000 to Rs 50,000 were recovered from them.”
The matter is being investigated by the Malad police station. The police have been given the custody of the accused till March 18. The police is trying to establish where they got the stolen phones from.