City cops bust Nigerian racket
Date of Publishing:25/10/2010
Warje police successfully track down two fraudsters who duped a techie of more than Rs 10 lakh. While the overseas mastermind is still at large, his accomplices were nabbed from Mumbai and Thane
For the first time this year the police have succeeded in nabbing two suspects in a Nigerian fraud case while probing a complaint filed by a 28-year-old software engineer. Abhishek Girish Chaudhary, a resident of Akshya Palace in Warje, was duped into parting with Rs 10.27 lakh when he was led to believe online that he was going to get a high-profile job in a London hotel called New Climax. In an e-mail chat with an alleged UK-based councillor, the techie from Rajiv Gandhi Infotech park at Hinjewadi was convinced to pack up and leave India for UK. The fraud came to light when Abhishek found out that there was no flight to UK from Indira Gandhi International Airport at the time, he was told by the conmen. The efforts put in by Warje police were successful and two perpetrators, including a bank account holder, have been arrested. However, the real mastermind Chon-Chin, who is a foreign national, is still absconding. A special squad of cyber experts have been investigating the Nigerian fraud racket run from Meera Road.
The three accused in the FIR filed by Chaudhary include Shailendra Ramesh Soni (24), a resident of Shivajinagar in Govandi in Mumbai; Naresh Shubrakaran Sharma (27), a resident of Queens Park in Mira-Bhayandar in Thane; and Chon-Chin, the foreign national whose complete name and address are yet to be traced. The fraud transpired from July 26 to September 24. The accused have been charged under various sections of the IPC and IT Act for cheating and conspiracy using Information Technology.
HOW THEY DUPED ABHISHEK
The statement filed by Abhishek with the Warje police said, "At first, ,on July 26 I received an email offering me a job in UK-based hotel New Climax. A person calling himself Chon-Chin claimed to be an authority at the hotel offered me the post of sales supervisor with a handsome UK salary. I responded to the e-mail and accepted the offer. The correspondence then continued. In another e-mail, a person called John Smith Levis, who introduced himself as a UK councillor claimed to have been given the responsibility by the hotel to provide visa. In order to get a Visa and pay for journey expenses, and accommodation in the UK, Levis asked for various amounts of money in different e-mails. He gave me several account numbers in different branches of Axis Bank and ICICI Bank. I deposited amounts ranging from Rs 2-5 lakh on different occasions. Over a two-month period I deposited a total amount of Rs 10,27,700." Abhishek added, "I made all the necessary arrangements and arranged the money from various sources. I shared the news with friends and parents. According to an e-mail I received on October 10, I had to catch a flight from Indira Gandhi International Airport and a person was going to meet me at the airport with a visa and an air ticket. During the correspondence, I was sent receipts with fake stamps and signatures of the British High Commissioner."
Abhishek said, "When I reached the airport, I found out that there was no such person waiting to receive me and I realised that I had been cheated. I returned to Pune and tried to contact the concerned person, but he didn't reply to my e-mails. I then decided to approach the police."
HOW POLICE TRACKED THEM
Inspector (Crime) P N Solankar said,"After receiving the complaint, we started investigating the accounts in which Chaudhary had deposited the requested amounts of money. We identified an account in the name of Shailendra Soni in the Shivajinagar branch of Axis Bank. We sent a team to Govandi and laid a trap for him. After the inquiry, we discovered that Soni was asked by someone called Sharma for permission to use his account. We nabbed Sharma in Mira-Bhayandar. The investigation revealed that someone hailing from Nigeria asked them to commit the crime. He had offered seven percent of the total amount to Sharma and Sharma in turn got Soni's help by offering him a five-percent commission. Sharma has met the suspected foreign national several times. They have been running this racket together for many years. Sharma is also a history-sheeter and has different crimes of cheating registered to his name. We are now trying to find out exactly how many crimes have been committed by this gang."
Web Resource for Reference of the Above Mentioned Article: