Odisha businessman duped of Rs 2 crore on pretext of getting loan; 2 nabbed from Mumbai

Bhubaneswar: Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of Odisha Crime Branch has arrested two persons from Mumbai on charges of cheating to the tune of over Rs 2 crore to a businessman.

The accused persons duo has been identified as Rakesh Kumar Girija Shankar Pandey and Sarman Singh Tomar. They were allegedly involved in an hawala racket.

The fraudsters duo was arrested on March 26 in under sections 406/420/467/468/471/120 B of IPC on basis of a complaint filed by Ashok Kumar Singh against Rakesh Pandey, Sarman Singh Tomar and seven others, informed the EOW in a release today.

They were accused of duping Ashok Singh of more than Rs 2.02 crore on the pretext of funding or financing of Rs 100 crore for his business.

Both the accused persons were produced before the Metropolitan magistrate, Holiday Court, Bandra, Mumbai on March 27. They were brought to Bhubaneswar on the strength of transit remand for production before the SDJM court in Bhubaneswar.

The investigation revealed that Ashok was running a real estate business, which witnessed a severe loss during Covid pandemic. After he failed to arrange finance from any bank for his business, he had sought for the funding from other sources. During June last year, he had come in contact with Rakesh Pandey, who assured him to arrange the fund of Rs 100 crore. He told him to pay Rs 2 crore as processing fee so that the fund can be sanctioned immediately.

At insistence of Rakesh, Ashok had been to Mumbai to arrange Rs 2 crore with help of his business partner and paid the amount to accused persons. Subsequently, he received many emails promising sanction of loan amount after following some procedure and documentation.

“But neither did the complainant receive the loan amount of Rs. 100 crore nor did he get back his Rs. 2 crore given as processing fees. Rakesh Pandey, Sarman Singh Tomar and others never gave any financial assistance as assured by them rather cheated the complainant and his business partner of an amount of Rs 2.02 crore by using the forged and fake agreement, email etc. They used the fake email id of a renowned company to fool the complainant,” the release stated.

During the investigation, the EOW found that Sarman Singh Tomar runs an illegal Hawala business in Mumbai and Rakesh Pandey, who is a native of Uttar Pradesh, is a veteran fraudster/ criminal/ extortionist having numerous criminal cases against him in Maharashtra and UP. They duped Ashok on pretext of providing loan.

During investigation, many incriminating documents/articles such as debit cards, credit cards and cheques of different banks, mobile phones, one “GLOCK” pistol with 8 rounds of live ammunitions and cash of Rs 50,000/- have been seized from the possession of accused Rakesh Pandey.

Police said that Rakesh Pandey is involved in at least 15 crimes like fraud/dacoity, robbery, swindling, forgery, attempt to murder, impersonation of public authority, etc registered at different police stations of Mumbai, Maharashtra, UP. His involvement in other such cases is under verification.

The investigation is underway and efforts are on to identify and arrest the remaining accused persons of the gang involved in hawala transactions or scam.



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