Surat Police arrested an Ivory Coast national for allegedly defrauding a man of Rs 14.7 lakh after promising him Rs 4 crore for his kidney via a bogus website of a reputable private hospital.
On July 13, the Surat police’s cyber cell filed a first information report (FIR) against unidentified individuals. Then, using technical surveillance, they identified and apprehended Toty Dago Gregoire, according to the official on Saturday.
Gregoire, a Bengaluru resident, allegedly created fake websites for 40 to 50 hospitals. He allegedly duped people who were willing to sell their kidneys by using these websites.
“Gregoire is originally from Ivory Coast in West Africa. He had come to India on a student visa in 2007 and stayed back. He was earlier arrested in October 2011 for forging fake certificates,” Surat Police Commissioner Ajay Tomar was quoted in the Press Trust of India’s report.
The accused, according to the police, promised the complainant Rs 2 crore as an advance payment for his kidney. Gregoire requested that the victim deposit money in several transactions begin the process.
The victim who was in dire need of money searched for various options to get money and came across ‘sale of kidney for money’ on Google. As a result of the pandemic, the Surat resident’s financial situation had deteriorated, and he was under financial stress due to debt. That’s when he discovered the allegedly fake website created by the accused, and the deal was made. The website featured a photograph of Bangalore’s Manipal Hospital.
Aside from paying Rs 14.7 lakh online as kidney sale process charges, the victim also provided the accused with his personal information.
When he was unable to contact anyone after paying more than Rs 14 lakh, he realised he had been the victim of fraud and filed a case.
According to the cyber cell, the accused was also involved in the creation of fake websites for forex trading and bitcoin investment, which were used to commit investment fraud. He also created bogus websites that advertised jobs in other countries.
According to the police, Gregoire also created a fake email ID in the name of a Reserve Bank of India officials and duped people into transferring money to various bank accounts.
The police have frozen over Rs 7.5 lakh in eight different bank accounts used in the transfer of money from the victim in this case. It was also discovered that these bank accounts were used for transactions totalling more than Rs 1.13 crore.
Toty Dago Gregoire was arrested under Indian Penal Code sections 406 (criminal breach of trust), 420 (cheating), and 465 (forgery), as well as the Information Technology Act. “Similar cases have been registered in Bengaluru and we are trying to find out about other such complaints. We are in touch with the cyber crime cells of other states for the same. We are trying to nab others who helped the accused create the websites,” Surat Police Commissioner Tomar said.