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ED raids portal involved in betting on 2024 poll results, illegal IPL broadcast

Cash, bank funds, demat account holdings and luxury watches to the tune of Rs 8 crore were seized or frozen apart from various other incriminating documents and digital devices, it said.
Last Updated : 13 June 2024, 15:39 IST

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New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate Thursday said it has conducted raids in Mumbai and Pune as part of a money laundering investigation against a website that allegedly indulged in online betting on 2024 Lok Sabha election results and illegal broadcast of IPL cricket matches.

The searches were launched on Wednesday at 19 locations in the two cities of Maharashtra of the portal 'Fairplay'--https://thefairplay.io, the federal agency said in a statement.

Cash, bank funds, demat account holdings and luxury watches to the tune of Rs 8 crore were seized or frozen apart from various other incriminating documents and digital devices, it said.

The portal was involved in "illegal broadcasting of cricket/IPL matches and various online betting activities including results of Lok Sabha Elections 2024," the agency said.

The Lok Sabha poll results were declared on June 4.

The money laundering case stems from an FIR of the Mumbai Police cyber cell which was filed on the complaint of Viacom18 Media Pvt Limited against Fairplay Sport LLC and others for causing loss of revenue of more than Rs 100 crore.

"Fairplay made agreements through foreign-based entities in Dubai and Curacao with Indian agencies representing celebrities. It was found that no due diligence was performed by Indian agencies regarding Fairplay before executing the agreements for its promotion," the agency said.

Fairplay, the ED alleged, collected funds through various bogus/shell bank accounts which in turn were layered through a complex web of bank accounts of shell entities and were then accumulated in Pharma companies involved in bogus billing.

Investigation found that funds from these companies have been siphoned off to overseas shell entities based out of Hong Kong, China and Dubai, the agency alleged.

More than 400 bank accounts of shell entities were found to be used for these purposes which are under examination along with trailing and utilisation of funds collected from the public by Fairplay, it said.

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Published 13 June 2024, 15:39 IST

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