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HindustanTimes Tue,02 Sep 2014

Crime's dirty white collar

Jatin Anand, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, January 07, 2011
First Published: 00:00 IST(7/1/2011) | Last Updated: 00:02 IST(7/1/2011)

White-collar criminals siphoned-off more funds and grabbed land estimated to be a hundred times more than the total value of everything that was stolen, robbed and snatched in Delhi last year.

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White-collar criminals were second only to dacoits and robbers as far as the arrest rates are concerned.

While 99 people were arrested for dacoity and robbery, 71 were arrested for white-collar crime in the city.

"Blue-collar crime may be traditional but we have witnessed a sudden surge in white-collar crime - especially property and bank fraud - in the last two years. Properties and bank accounts of defrauders amounting to more than Rs. 1,000 crore were seized in 2010," said Vivek Gogia, deputy commissioner of police (Economic Offences Wing).

A mere sleight of hand, a couple of fake documents and, on most occasions, a single forged signature helped white-collar criminals amass assets in just a matter of days what the total value of items robbed or snatched from victims during the whole year amounted to.

"Take the case of Gurmeet Singh Wadalia for instance. Forged signatures and documents helped him fraudulently amass a fortune of more than Rs. 100 crore in just two transactions in which vulnerable persons like senior citizens were targeted. In a similar manner, an NRI woman was defrauded of the Rs. 4.5 crore in her account by two men in just two days," said a senior police officer from the economic offences wing.

Similarly, the officer said, property worth Rs. 60 crore was seized from the operators of a car rental company - identified as Rupesh and Amit Verma, who had succeeded in duping more than 25,000 persons nationwide.

Police said that even the total number of vehicles stolen in the entire city would just amount to booty siphoned-off in just three or perhaps four economic offences.

The EOW attached property spread over 438.28 acres in the national capital region and investigated more than 1,400 cases during the year and as many as 238 persons were arrested for economic offences.

"If a gang of five boys risks their respective lives to rob a bank or steal a car in the city, they would manage to get away with the minutest fraction of what white collar criminals can accomplish with the just one stroke of their pens," deputy commissioner Gogia added.


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