A police officer who allegedly laid honey trap for businessmen was on Saturday snared by law.
The network's alleged orchestrator, Fhulel Singh, sub-inspector in Punjab Police and athletics coach, is under arrest on a charge of blackmailing a local businessman by threatening to make his hidden-camera dirty video public on multimedia messaging service (MMS).
Serving in the 6th India Reserve Battalion (IRB), Fhulel is also charged with controlling a gang of three women who lured prominent people into sex and then blackmailed them. "A Class-12th student Prabhjot Kaur, 18, daughter of a religious preacher from Mansa, who is in the video made for the purpose of blackmail, is also under arrest," said senior superintendent of police Hardial Singh Mann.
The alleged co-conspirator, a woman named Krishna of Urban Estate here, is on the run. "Fhulel and Krishna might have together blackmailed many people, as they ran an organised racket. We have the extortion money and the incrimination video," said the SSP.
From a local commission agent, the network extorted Rs 35,000 as first installment of Rs 2 lakh, demanded for not putting the video on MMS and the Internet. In his complaint to police, commission agent Darshan Singh said he prayed at Gurdwara Dukhniwaran Sahin daily and there had first met Krishna. "She introduced me to Prabhjot Kaur, saying her parents were ill and she needed some help. I gave her Rs 5,000 to help her out and she visited my shop on the pretext of saying thanks and lured me into sex," said Darshan Singh.
The next day, SI Fhulel Singh came to the shop in his police uniform, showed him the MMS-format video and sought Rs 10 lakh as the price for keeping quiet. Dharshan settled it for Rs 2 lakh to save his reputation.
On May 31, when Darshan Singh paid the first instalment, he came to know it was an ogranised racket run by a policemen, and decided to lodge a complaint.
A case of cheating, extortion, conspiracy, immoral trafficking, and abuse of the information technology law has been registered against the accused.