Pramesh S Jain.Yogesh K Porwar
The cyber crime officials of Criminal Investigation Department on Saturday busted Money Laundering Racket linked to Hawala racket involving a turnout of over Rs 290 crore.
The officials have arrested 10 persons including two Chinese nationals,two Tibetans while efforts are on to track down the kingpin who is yet to be arrested.
MD Sharath,Superintendent of Police (cyber crime),who led the probe,told media persons,that based on a complaint a special team tracked the accused prime accused in the case identified as Anas Ahmed,who offered Several financial schemes online and mobile apps,promising higher returns for the investment made.
The accused used social media platform to lure gullible people offering quick and higher returns.
Initially the investors were paid by the accused promptly,but this is to lure more and more people,Mr.Sharath,Said.
The accused wind up the business after collecting huge amount from the investors.They even open shell companies for routing the funds collected fraudulently and these are being managed by Chinese nationals as handlers,The CID investigation,revealed.
The accused even lured many people to open bank accounts in their names which the accused use for their fraudulent financial dealings.
The scam came to light following a complaint from a city based company (Razor pay Software Private Limited)alleging the accused availing payment solutions from Razor pay by representing that they are running business in the categories gaming,social & e-commerce.
But,they have defrauded the company by deviating from their original category of business in which they had registered and have started routing their transactions to collect payments from a different business named “Powerbank”, an app listed in Google Playstore.
Through customer complaints,the complainant company got to know that public invested certain amount in “Powerbank”app to earn some percentage of daily and weekly interest on the invested amount.
The accused after accepting the invested amount,neither gave the agreed interest,nor the principal amount thereby withholding the principal amount of their customers,which has resulted in cheating to such customers and deviating from normal course of business.
Based on the complaint the cyber crime police arrested 10 persons including 2 Chinese and 2 Tibetan nationals and six persons from various parts including Delhi,Surat and Bengaluru who were acting as directors of the companies.
During the course of investigation,it is found that Anas Ahmed,a Kerala based business man is the main person involved in this hawala and money laundering racket.
Further investigation revealed that Anas had opened shell companies in the name of Bull finch technologies,H&S ventures and Clifford ventures to route the fraud money.
Anas Ahamed completed his studies in Medicine in China and married to Chinese National.
An Online Rummy application hosted by him were later camouflaged and converted into different applications like Power Bank application,Sun Factory application seeking investment from the public promising good returns.
An unusual spike was seen in user investments on the day Anas Ahmed announced much higher returns.The apps from Google Playstore and other websites were removed soon after getting huge amount and he absconded with money.
During the investigation,it was found that a total of 290 crores INR inflow to his bank accounts.
Cyber Crime Division was successful in freezing significant portion of money from the account.
It is also noted during investigation that there is huge spike in opening of shell companies since November 2020.
We have also observed that the Chinese handlers are in possession of huge number of shell companies and bank accounts.
After going through the assets and bank accounts of the accused, it was also noted during investigation that there was a huge spike in the opening of shell companies since November 2020.
We have also observed that the Chinese handlers are in possession of a number of shell companies and bank accounts.The probe is ongoing, he said.
Appeal to the public by Cyber Crime Division,CID Karnataka:
1.Not to invest money through any App which is not verified and not get lured by the offers which seems more attractive than it appears.
2.Whoever have invested in Power bank application in Karnataka may approach Cyber Crime division of CID with appropriate details.
3.Not to believe the company related information on public domain,they might be forged documents or Indian shell companies setup by other countries nationals,Chinese (in this case).
4.Never download any APKs from unknown websites.
DGP,CID,PS Sandhu said,We are witnessing that Criminals are the perpetual early adopters of technology to defraud public.I urge the public to be wary about any investment that promises you more than 12 % annual returns.It could be fraudulent one he added.
I appeal to the public to exercise additional caution when downloading any mobile applications online especially related to finance,Umesh Kumar ADGP,CID said.
Finally DGP,CID,PS Sandhu,has appreciated, ADGP,Umesh Kumar,SP,CID,MD Sharath and team as,PIs,as,Krishna Kumar,Nayaz Ahmed,Mithun Shilpi,Santosh Ram,Tabrez,Shivakumar,CHC, Vinod,CPC,Munirathna,CHC,Shafiulla,CHC and Smt.Shobha has been successful in nabbing the accused from various parts of states and busted the major Hawala and Money laundering racket a suitable reward will be given to the team he added.