- Accused impersonated law enforcement agencies to cheat money from unsuspecting people abroad.
- Foreign nationals from the US and other countries were threatened with legal action and made to transfer money via Bitcoins and Gift Cards.
- 42 persons were arrested from the illegal call centre. More than 3,500 persons of around Rs. 70 crores
New Delhi: A call centre running in Peeragarhi area was busted by Cyber Crime cell of Delhi police and 42 persons were arrested. The accused allegedly called people in the US and other countries impersonating as various Law Enforcement Agencies and coaxed them into transferring a colossal amount of money after threatening them of legal action against them.
Anyesh Roy, DCP (CyPAD) said that during questioning the gang disclosed that they contacted foreign nationals based in the US and other countries impersonating various law enforcement agencies and other government agencies such as the Social Security Administration, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the US Marshals Service, etc. and tell them that their bank accounts and other assets are being frozen as their details have been found at a crime scene and there are bank accounts running in their names using which illegal transactions have been made to drug cartels in Mexico and Colombia. They also threaten the victims with immediate arrest.
Once the victim becomes apprehensive, they give them two options. One is to go for a legal action in which, first the victim would be arrested and their assets would be seized and only, later on, could the victim fight it out in the court. The second option is to go for an Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) which would be faster and simpler.
When the victim chooses to go for ADR, they ask them to share all the details of their assets, including bank accounts and the amount of money in those accounts. In the next step, the victim is told that there is only one way to safeguard their assets; they would have to either buy Bitcoins or Google Gift Cards worth all the money in their accounts. If the victim agrees to buy Bitcoins, the accused induce them to convert all the money in their accounts into Bitcoins and transfer the same to the wallets operated by the accused persons, saying that it is a safe government wallet.
If the victim agrees to buy Gift Cards, they induce them to share the number of the cards stating that it will be linked to their new bank accounts and thus, be safe. This has been corroborated by the written script recovered from the possession of the accused persons which describes the entire Modus Operandi step by step in detail and acts as a guide for the accused persons.
The script has also been seized, along with the mobile phones of the accused, which were used in the commission of the offence.
The accused have disclosed that on an average, each caller (first level of the scam) was paid Rs. 20-25 thousand per month as salary while the team leaders and closers ( second level) were paid Rs. 45-50 thousand per month.
The salary of the shift manager was Rs. 75 thousand per month. In addition to this, all employees were paid incentives. For every USD that they managed to scam, the caller got Rs.2 and the team leader/closer got Rs.4 as incentive. Moreover, all employees were paid Holiday and Annual bonuses.
They have disclosed that on an average, each call that they managed to ‘convert’ would last 4-5 hours and they would not let the victim hang up in between. Over the last three years, they have managed to scam 2-3 persons every day. The highest amount scammed from a single person so far was around USD 45 thousand.
Most of the employees have been recruited based on the recommendations of the existing employees and after a rigorous interview. The referring employee also got a referral bonus if the referred employee was finally selected for the job. Most of them are graduates from various colleges across the country and had come to Delhi looking for a job.
Police claim all digital devices found at the spot were seized and 42 persons including 26 male and 16 female were arrested. Owner, four-team leaders identified as Rajat, Gagan, Prashant, Amy and Lucy were arrested. Police have recovered over Rs. 4.5 lakhs from the spot which were to be paid to the callers as Christmas and New Year bonus.
A team comprising of Inspector Manoj, Sub-Inspector Avdesh, Sub-Inspector Sunil, Sub-Inspector Ajit and others under the supervision of ACP Aditya Gautam raided the call centre.
The case is under investigation and help is being obtained from the labs of CyPAD to retrieve crucial digital evidence.