Gujarat: Businessman loses Rs 11 crore to fraudsters

Gujarat: Businessman loses Rs 11 crore to fraudsters

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A father-son duo from Delhi was arrested by the Ahmedabad police for allegedly extracting Rs 11.06 crore from a city businessman by posing as bank officers and luring him into investing in various schemes and insurance products over three years, said officials on Thursday.

The arrests were made by the cybercrime branch of the Ahmedabad police on Wednesday.

After a week-long surveillance on movements of the suspects, officials of the cybercrime branch arrested one Saurabh Giri (25) and his father Brijesh (50) from Bhajanpura in Delhi and brought them here on Thursday, said a release issued by the police.

In his complaint, apparel trader Prataprai Avtani had alleged he was duped to the tune of Rs 11.06 crore by some people who had posed as officials of a private bank and lured him into investing in government bonds, mutual funds and insurance schemes which the fraudsters claimed would give over 18 per cent annual return, said the release.

To win Avtani's trust, the accused sent fake letters and other documents bearing fake stamps and symbols of the RBI, the Income Tax Department, the Ministry of Finance and the IRDA via email and WhatsApp, it said.

Putting trust in the claims made by the accused, Avtani deposited Rs 11.06 crore in various bank accounts between June 2016 and December 2019. When he did not receive any return, Avtani approached the cybercrime on January 24.

Police said Saurabh Giri was the mastermind of the crime, while his father helped his son in duping the businessman.

"Saurabh had the details of Avtani as he once worked at a call centre of a private bank which offered life insurance products," Deputy Commissioner of Police, cybercrime, Rajdeepsinh Zala.

"With the help of his father, Saurabh hatched a conspiracy and duped Avtani who deposited money in five bank accounts of the duo thinking he was investing in genuine schemes," he said.

The investigation also revealed the duo purchased property with the money, Zala said. 

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