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Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Pune Police Bust Rs4-Crore Online Share Trading Racket Involving Bogus Trading App and Money Mule Accounts Five arrested in connection with the cyber fraud scheme involving the use of fake online trading app, money mule accounts, and transferring money to Hong Kong via cryptocurrency. The police recovered Rs7 lakh and various electronic devices from the suspects. 120 money mule accounts have been identified, with 80 located in Pune. The suspects would withdraw money from these accounts and send it to their handler in Hong Kong in exchange for a commission. The breakthrough came when a victim of the fraud filed a complaint after transferring Rs35.6 lakh to a bank account in Pimpri Chinchwad. The police were able to track the suspects through technical analysis and investigation of the bank accounts involved in the fraud.

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Pune Police Bust Rs4-Crore Online Share Trading Racket

Overview

The cyber cell of the Pimpri Chinchwad police uncovered a Rs4 crore online share trading racket involving the use of a bogus online trading app, money mule accounts, and routing of money to Hong Kong via USDT cryptocurrency. Five people were arrested in Pune, and Rs7 lakh, 12 cheque books, eight debit cards, seven cellphones, and a cash counting machine were recovered from them. The police have identified 120 money mule accounts, including 80 in Pune banks, used for transactions in the crime.

How It Unfolded

Tingrenagar resident Junaid Mukhtar Qureshi, who was into online share trading, came in contact with a Hong Kong-based handler known as ‘Greg’. Qureshi secured mule accounts with the help of Salman Mansoor Shaikh, Abdul Aziz Ansari, Aqif Anwar Arif Anwar Khan, and Taufiq Gaffar Shaikh. These accounts were used to transfer money in the name of online share trading. The suspects would then withdraw the cash and route it to their handler in Hong Kong via USDT cryptocurrency.

Breakthrough

The breakthrough in the case came during the technical analysis of a cellphone and examination of a bank account in Pimpri Chinchwad. A 46-year-old woman from Baner transferred Rs35.6 lakh to the account in February after being duped by an online share trading scheme. The crooks had stopped communicating with her after the money was transferred.

The cyber cell team started working on technical details and analyzed the phone number used by the crooks in this case. They also studied the bank account where the victim’s money was sent, leading them to the suspects. Most of the 80 bank accounts identified were of relatives and friends of the arrested individuals, who used them with their friends’ consent.

FAQ

Q: How much money was involved in the online share trading racket?

A: The cyber fraud scheme discovered by the Pune police involved a total of Rs4 crore.

Q: How did the suspects transfer money to their handler in Hong Kong?

A: The suspects would withdraw money from mule accounts and send it to their handler in Hong Kong via USDT cryptocurrency.

Q: What led to the breakthrough in the case?

A: The breakthrough came when a victim filed a complaint after transferring Rs35.6 lakh to a bank account in Pimpri Chinchwad. This led the police to track the suspects through technical analysis and investigation of the bank accounts involved in the fraud.

Conclusion

The Pimpri Chinchwad police have cracked down on a major online share trading racket involving the use of money mule accounts and cryptocurrency to siphon off money to Hong Kong. The arrested suspects were involved in using these accounts for fraudulent activities, leaving victims in financial distress. The cyber cell’s diligent investigation led to the unraveling of the crime network, resulting in the arrest of the perpetrators and recovery of substantial amounts of money and assets.

It is essential for individuals to be cautious while engaging in online transactions and investment schemes to avoid falling prey to such scams. The police urge the public to report any suspicious activities or offers that seem too good to be true to prevent further financial losses due to cyber fraud.


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