Son of former Mr India held in cheating case at MIDC

Mumbai: MIDC police have arrested the son of a former Mr India, Viju Penkar, while his sister and father have been booked for allegedly cheating a real estate consultant of Rs 85 lakh, police said.

The trio allegedly sold two flats twice in Sher-e-Punjab Colony in Andheri to different buyers. Penkar’s son Raphael’s arrest was made over a year later, while the other two accused in the case continue to evade arrest.

Along with the three members of the Penkar family, police have booked the two owners of flat numbers 211 and 214, that was purchased by cheating.

All the accused have been booked under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code for cheating (section 420), criminal conspiracy (section 120B) and common intention (section 34).

According to the police, a case of cheating was registered in 2018 against a suburban developer who allegedly sold flats twice, first to the complainant and then to a second buyer, giving possession to the latter.

When confronted, Penkar allegedly conspired with the second owner and concocted a fake story to cover his tracks. The accused gave the complainant receipts of payments made but at the time of drafting the agreement, did so in the name of the second owner. The police said that it is gathering evidence following which the accused can be arrested.

According to the complainant, Hemant Gupta (57), a resident of Andheri’s Sher-e-Punjab Society, he had paid Rs 80 lakh for two flats (211 and 214) in a building that would be constructed on a plot in Sher-e-Punjab Colony.

Gupta and Viju Penkar, secretary of the housing society, entered a verbal contract stating that since Penkar was in monetary distress, he was selling the flats to the complainant.

Soon after the verbal contract, Penkar set up a meeting with the developer who would construct the building and asked Gupta to pay the token amount and transfer fees to acquire rights of the flats.

Eight years after the verbal contract and the exchange of money and receipts, much to his shock, the complainant found that the two flats had been sold to two persons, Manoj Gupta and Gangaram Patel.

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