ED files first charge sheet against Anubhav Mittal in Rs 3700 crore Noida ponzi scheme
After four months of investigation into the case, the enforcement directorate has submitted a 50-page report before a special Lucknow court.noida Updated: Jul 08, 2017 16:19 IST
The Enforcement Directorate on Thursday filed its first charge sheet in the alleged Rs 3,700 crore ponzi scheme perpetrated by a Noida-based firm, which had promised money for ‘likes’ on social media to lakhs of gullible investors.
The central probe agency filed the voluminous prosecution complaint (charge sheet), of which the operational part is a 50-page report, before a special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court here.
Enforcement Directorate (ED) joint director Rajeshwar Singh said the charge sheet has been filed after over four months of investigation into the case,in which over Rs 654 crore assets have been attached by the agency.
The case involves a firm named Ablaze Info Solutions Private Limited, owned by Anubhav Mittal, who is the alleged kingpin of the ponzi scheme case. He was arrested by the ED in the case.
Officials said a supplementary charge sheet is soon expected to be filed.
The agency said Mittal had collected “several thousand crores of rupees from the customers of his company by false inducements and later siphoned off the same by means of generating false or bogus bills/invoices with the assistance of various persons who are under scrutiny”.
The ED had on January 5 registered a criminal case under the PMLA based on an FIR of the Uttar Pradesh Police’s Special Task Force (STF), which had first unearthed the alleged ponzi or multilevel marketing scam.
The agency later filed a second FIR in the case, also known as the Enforcement Case Information Report.
“The modus operandi of the accused according to their business scheme as alleged was that through their web portal, they promoted a scheme where by liking the webpage — which were fictitiously shown associated to international social media groups like Google and Facebook — the users will earn money,” the agency said.
“The accused persons propagated a false story that the promotional web pages linked on these international social media portals pay Rs 6 per likes, out of which they pay Rs 5 to the investment/user,” the ED had said.
The probe agency had said that the fraudsters allegedly cheated about 6.5 lakh gullible investors of an estimated Rs 3,700 crore, a fraud bigger in value than the infamous Saradha chit fund scam of West Bengal and Assam, which is pegged at Rs 2,500 crore.