Mumbai: Man held for cheating on pretext of offering petrol pump distributor license

The North Region Cyber Police arrested a man in his mid 30s for allegedly duping a Malad-based man to the tune of ₹45.37 lakh on the pretext of giving a petrol pump distributor license. The accused was apprehended from Bihar and booked under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and Information Technology Act.

According to police, a man, who introduced himself as Rohit Gupta, approached the victim via internet on March 11 and then offered him a petrol pump distributor license. After convincing the victim for over two months, the accused finally conned him into a filling out an application form, and provided him with a user login ID and password at http://petrolpumpsdistributor.in/login/ website.

Police officials said Gupta then charged money for various reasons, on the pretext of procuring the license and duped the victim of ₹45,37,999. When the victim asked about the status of the petrol pump distributor license, he was given vague answers or Gupta never answered the call. After many calls went unanswered, the victim realised he was duped and approached the local police and then the North Region Cyber Police.

Subsequently, a case of impersonation, cheating, forgery and using a forged document as genuine in an electronic form under the IPC and IT Act. During the probe, police scrutinised the website that was used to dupe the victim and traced the accused to Shekhpura in Bihar, following which a team was sent to nab the accused.

With the help from local police, a team from North Region Cyber Police apprehended Gaurav Raj on June 8, who also revealed that there was a call centre, which made calls to the prospective victims. Based on this intel, police raided the call centre and seized seven mobile phones, five SIM cards, seven SIM card covers, six cheque books of various banks, three pass books, two cheque leaflets of a private bank, a nationalised bank's welcome kit, 11 ATM cards, collectively valued at ₹3.08 lakh.

Police have brought Gaurav Raj to Mumbai for further probe and they are investigating the matter to ascertain how many more people were duped using the same modus operandi and trying to recover the cheated amount.

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