Online fraudsters held for duping businessmen

The city cyber crime police arrested Surendra Rangad Puran (42) who were duping businessmen on the pretext of offering business partnership in international companies in herbal seeds. DH Photo

The city cybercrime police arrested two men for duping businessmen on the pretext of offering partnership in international companies in herbal seeds and veterinary healthcare.

A senior police officer said the suspects, identified as Aakash V Goni (39) from Mira Road, Mumbai, and his associates Surendra Rangad Puran (42), from Jogeshwari in Mumbai, were arrested after a city-based businessman complained that he was duped of Rs 30 lakh in September 2017.

The police seized a car, six ATM cards and four mobile phones, all worth Rs 3 lakh, from the suspects. The investigation revealed that Goni’s father was a Kannada film director and producer.

The police said the duo used to send messages through fake social media accounts and emails to businessmen. After getting responses, they would contact them and gain their confidence. They used to introduce themselves as executives of a veterinary healthcare company in the US and Canada and convince people that their company planned to set up a branch in India to develop an animal vaccine and offer huge returns.

They would also convince people that there was a huge demand for herbal seeds in the US and asked them to open franchise by investing crores of rupees.

Modus operandi

The police officer said the suspects approached the city-based businessman and asked him to open a branch office and buy huge quantities of fluoride extract chemicals. Later, they used to send some men posing as local residents, who offered to sell him fluoride at throwaway prices. They would ask him to deposit cash into their banks for sending him the consignment. He deposited Rs 30 lakh in their bank accounts to get 100 litres of fluoride and soon after money was deposited in their account, the suspects switched off their mobile phones.

After a detailed probe, a special team police succeeded in tracking down Goni and Puran from Mumbai based on their call detail record and bank accounts.

Racket busted

Following information provided by the arrested, their associates identified as Chetan Sharma (29), from Rourkela, Odisha, Shamim Ahmed (36), from Deoria district in UP, Tubudi Mukadi Jean (25), a Congo national, and his associate Philip Opeyemi (30), from Nigeria who were living in Kalyan Nagar under a student visa, were arrested.

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