Hyderabad: The Cyberabad Cyber Crime Police cracked a multi-crore scam operated from Indore, Madhya Pradesh, in which a few companies cheated people by promising to provide them tips to earn money in the share market. The police arrested four men and seized Rs 3.63 crore from them.
Cyberabad police commissioner V.C. Sajjanar said that the scam could be much bigger, and the amount of money involved could cross Rs 1,000 crore and the number of victims over 100.
The arrests followed complaints from several Cyberabad residents who paid lakhs of rupees to the firms in return for trading tips, Mr Sajjanar said.
Following the complaints, a team led by ACP Y. Srinivas Kumar, inspectors K. Srinivas and Ramaiah and sub-inspector Vijay Vardhan and staff visited Indore, raided the said companies and arrested the men with help from local police and Securities and Exchange Board of India, Indore.
In company of frauds
The arrested men were identified as Swapnil Prajapati from Highbrow Market Research Investments Advisers Pvt Ltd, Akhilesh Raghuwanshi, director and representative of The Equicom Financial Research Pvt Ltd, Santosh Singh Parihar, proprietor-cum-representative of Trade Bizz Research and Sagar Sahu from Safar Research. Officials said that Swapnil and Akhilesh were former colleagues, having worked as telecallers at Capital Via Global Investor Pvt Ltd in 2012.
The firms would deploy armed bouncers outside to prevent those who had been cheated from entering. “Those who had been cheated approached them in Indore, finding the address on Google, only to be stopped by gunmen and bouncers at the gates,” said a cyber crimes investigating officer in Cyberabad.
“They would call up customers and offer them free tips for two days and then collect fees in the name of registration services and online documentation,” said the police commissioner. “They would then put forward monthly, quarterly, half-yearly and yearly subscriptions for their ‘tips’ and collect money accordingly and also collect investments in the name of trading in the second stage.”
The Cyber Crimes team is collecting more data to crack unreported cases as well. Officials said the firms had cases booked against them with Mumbai and Indore police.
“About 600 such establishments run by employing tele-callers who are given a script to read out and gain unsuspecting investors’ trust,” said K. Srinivas, inspector of Cyber Crimes Cyberabad. “Sebi claims they can cancel the license of such establishments only when those involved are convicted, which is causing the delay. Share trading investors should be careful before they pay any investment advisers based out of Hyderabad. They should visit the adviser’s office in person and pay only after they are satisfied with their terms and conditions. Investors should also go through reviews about companies and verify them through registered reputed share-trading companies or local SEBI officials before paying them.”