Mumbai: Malad Police nabs two for defrauding football coach of Rs 9 lakh

The Malad Police in Mumbai arrested two people, Atul Valchur and Jayesh Prajapati, for defrauding a football coach of Rs 9 lakh by proposing part-time work. The detectives seized the suspects` bank accounts and Aadhaar cards, the police said on Thursday.

According to police sources, their modus operandi involved opening bank accounts with nominal amounts and then supplying them to cyber criminals.

The victim, a Malad-based football coach, received a message from a scam artist last year who tempted him with the prospect of a rich part-time employment. The coach was tricked into joining a Telegram channel and then extorted Rs 9 lakhs under the guise of fulfilling chores. When he realized he had fallen victim to a scam, he immediately reported the matter to Malad police, according to a Malad police officer, police sources said.

An investigating team led by Police Inspector Rajendra Panhale, PSI Netra Mule, Tauseef Sheikh, and Matne launched the investigation, which was overseen by Senior Inspector Ravindra Adhane. The crew gathered critical evidence and then proceeded to Surat, where they interrogated a bank account holder who exposed Atul`s role. Atul was arrested, and the police confiscated 39 bank ATMs, a checkbook, and an Aadhaar card from him, police sources said.

Atul was accused of promoting the use of bank accounts by criminals in Surat. During Atul`s interrogation, Jayesh`s involvement was revealed, resulting to his detention as well. Following their arrests, both suspects were remanded to police custody by the court, the officer explained.

Further research found that Jayesh would go to Dubai for alleged leisure vacations after illicit money were sent to an account. While ATM withdrawals in India were limited to 25,000 rupees, Dubai permitted bigger amounts to be recovered. Atul would keep the ill-gotten riches in a single account, and Jayesh would withdraw the funds in Dubai. According to another officer, the investigation revealed that Jayesh had made four trips to Dubai and withdrawn a total of Rs 17 lakhs to far.

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