7 who cheated firm, bank of ₹4.1 crore heldUpdated: Feb 14, 2020 00:55 IST
Seven people, including a bank employee, a lawyer and an export businessman, were arrested by Panvel police on Thursday for allegedly forging documents of a company to siphon off ₹4.10 crore from its bank account.
Police said Arafat Shaikh, 33, a lawyer based in Nerul was the mastermind, who orchestrated the fraud with the help of Mukesh Gupta, the 45-year-old sales manager of the bank’s Panvel branch. The other accused are Amitabh Mitra, 61, a consultant; Javed Ahmed Qureshi, 55, who helped forge documents; Ramkishan Pandey, 51, an exporter; Vinod Bhosale, 44, a businessman; and Shrijil Kurpambil, 39, a Dombivli-based businessman.
Police said Shaikh asked Gupta which account at their branch reported the maximum number of transactions. Gupta told Shaikh about the account of a company, after which the latter got in touch with Qureshi, who helped him create fake letterheads, rubber stamps and cheques of the firm. Officers suspect they targeted the account to avoid raising suspicion when they would be frequently withdrawing money from it.
The accused then created an account in another bank in the name of another company, which they used to siphon off money from the complainant firm. Police said Gupta also gave the accused the contact number of the complainant firm. They then submitted an application on the company’s forged letterhead to change the registered contact number to prevent the complainant firm from getting a text alert. The accused then transferred the money to their account in the other bank.
Officers said the accused, however, forgot to change the email address and the complainant company got to know of the transfer via email notification. “After the company submitted a complaint to us, the account was immediately frozen. We traced all the accused, most of whom have criminal cases against them. One exporter has a DRI case against him, while one was arrested on charges of murder. ₹4.6 crore was secured,” said Ashok Dudhe, deputy commissioner of police, zone 2.