Vikash Sharma

The Economic Offences Wing (EOW), Bhubaneswar has arrested a scammer in connection with a major courier fraud spanning Pan India. The scam involves blackmailing individuals by impersonating NCB, CBI and RBI officials.

The accused has been identified as Rajat Kumar of Haryana. He was nabbed from Himachal Pradesh on February 4 and brought to Bhubaneswar on a transit remand today. Rajat Kumar was arrested based on the complaint filed by a lady journalist in Bhubaneswar.

The complainant had alleged to have received a phone call (VoIP call) from a person who introduced himself as an employee of FedEx, Hyderabad in July 2023. The caller informed the lady journalist her that a parcel containing six Passports, one Laptop, five ATM Cards, 150 grams of Narcotics drugs had been sent to her and has been intercepted by NCB Mumbai officials.

Despite claiming that the parcel did not belonged to her, the caller asked her to come to Narcotic Bureau Cell Mumbai or connect with one Mr Gill over Skype. The caller even threatened that she would be prosecuted under various charges including narcotics case and money laundering if she ignored this.

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The Fraud And How It Worked

In the second stage, one Mr. Gill, who claimed himself to be Head of the Narcotic Bureau Cell, Mumbai emerges and informed the victim that a case of money laundering, Narcotics smuggling and violation of Crypto norm has been filed against her due to the illegal transactions through her Bank accounts.

The victim was also told that she has links with Gangster Islam Malik. Subsequently, the complainant was made to talk to one Dr. Balsing Rajput, IPS, DCP, Cyber Crime, whoshowed her a document issued by CBI and a letter with the seal of RBI that mentions her involvement in money laundering.

“He suggested her that if she wants to prove her innocence, she has to send an amount of around Rs 1.5 lakh to the given account number of FDRBI of RBI for verification. Further, she was assured that if nothing illegal/suspicious is found with her Bank transactions, the amount will be immediately returned to her within 15 minutes. Out of panic and shock, she sent the amount from her Bank accounts through UPI and IMPS.” EOW said in a release.

Major Racket And Startling Findings

EOW investigation reveals that it is a huge scam using the name of courier companies and faking as NCB, CBI, ED, Police Officers etc. Hundreds of people across the country are being extorted huge amount of money. The amount deposited by victim landed in mule accounts of one Jagdamba Enterprises in Punjab.

It was also found that scammers had extorted Rs 5.58 crore (from many victims across the country using this single account) in just 2-3 days. The money was further transferred to different mule accounts and ultimately a major chunk of this amount was withdrawn through ATM in Dubai, UAE.

Next Course Of Action By EOW

EOW has got vital clues about real masterminds of this scam and the fraudsters sitting in Dubai. Efforts are on to arrest them. So far 17 incriminating bank accounts have been frozen in this case.

Meanwhile, in a statement, FedEx stated that the Company does not request personal information through unsolicited phone calls, mail, or email for goods being shipped or held, unless requested or initiated by customers. 

The company also urged if any individual receives any suspicious phone calls or messages, they should not provide their personal information. Instead, they should immediately contact the local law enforcement authorities within the vicinity or report to the cybercrime department of the government of India.