The lure of winning a lottery worth R350 crore led to a number of people in various parts of the country losing lakhs of rupees.
The Delhi Police have arrested four persons, including three Nigerians, for allegedly cheating several persons by promising them that they have won a lottery worth Rs 350 crore.
They were arrested following investigations into a complaint by one Arvind Kumar.
Kumar had alleged that he had been cheated of Rs 4.7 lakh by someone who had promised him an online lottery of Rs 350 crore via SMS and e-mail. The gang was specialised in sending text messages and fake spoofed e-mail of lottery wins.
“The location of the sender is difficult to ascertain in
such spoofed e-mails. Once hooked the victim is asked to send sensitive information
to a free e-mail account generated by the gang. At the same time a cleverly drafted e-mail advised the victims to keep the matter secret till the amount was received by them,” said Ashok Chand, deputy commissioner of police (crime).
The arrested have been identified as John (34), Davies Inemhonlan (31) and Sunday Mokobi (38), all Nigerians, and Sameer Ahmed, a resident of Delhi’s Seelampur.
“The victims are from various parts of the country and educated people. The scam has a distinct Metro signature. The worst affected areas were Delhi, Bangalore, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, parts of Uttar Pradesh and Kerala,” added Chand.
The victims were contacted both on mobile phones through SMS and the internet using spam mails.
In order to win the confidence of Kumar, the victim, the accused informed him that they have opened an account with the Reserve Bank of India in which they have transferred the money won by him and if he intended to verify this fact they provided the victim an URL (Uniform Record Locator) along with the account number and PIN number.
John, who is a diploma holder in estate management, came to India in 2005. He was unable to find a suitable job here and ran a garment business and exported clothes to Nigeria.
“He saw his friends use computers and earn good money in India. He started his own racket. He has been staying illegally in India,” Chand said.
“The lure of huge amount of lottery money led them to deposit their hard-earned money into the bank account numbers provided to them by the scamsters,” said Chand.