On Friday, the Navi Mumbai crime branch seized counterfeit currency of Rs 2.28 lakh, and arrested four people. The police said the four were planning to circulate the currency in the market.
The four were arrested near the Seawoods Railway station branch of Canara Bank, which is in Nerul.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (Crime) D.T. Shinde said: “We got information that some people were to come to the area to shop with fake notes and we laid a trap.”
The police arrested Samsuddin Idris Shaikh (31), Babloo Shaikh (26), Rabiulislam Ali (22) and Humayun Shaikh, all from Malda in West Bengal. They seized 457 fake notes of Rs 500 denomination and Rs 11,300 in cash and three cellphones.
Shinde said, “Babloo Shaikh had brought the fake notes from West Bengal to circulate them in Mumbai. Shamsuddin who runs a juice centre at Ale Phata on the Nashik-Pune road was assisting him. The other two arrested work as labourers in the wholesale APMC market.”
He added: “Babloo had asked for Rs 200 commission from the others for every fake Rs 500 note they used in the market. So they were trying to shop in the area.” The police are investigating the source of the counterfeit notes.
On August 20, the Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) arrested three people — Mohammed Arshad, Sakir Sheikh and Matlub Quresh — for distributing 784 fake currency notes of Rs 100 denomination each.
The police said all the three accused were residents of Malad and had told the ATS that the notes with governor Y.V. Reddy’s signature were being printed in the country.
A probe is on to establish their network and crack the syndicate. Police sources reveal that much of the fake currency is coming from Dubai or from Kolkata from the Bangladesh side.