Hyderabad cops file charges in ₹30,000 crore instant loan racket
- The Cybercrime police of Hyderabad said at least seven people had died by suicide in Telangana alone due to harassment of these online lending agencies
The Cybercrime police of Hyderabad on Friday filed a charge-sheet in connection with a ₹30,000 crore online loan racket, based out of China, that ruined the lives of hundreds of people.
The racket encouraged borrowers to take loans in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Bengaluru, Chennai and Mumbai and charged them steep interest rates. “In Telangana, as many as seven people died by suicide unable to bear the harassment of these online lending agencies,” the police said.
The police told the court that the total transactions indulged in by the accused ran into around ₹30,000 crore. “They made a profit of around ₹11,000 crore, which they have diverted to benami accounts,” the cybercrime police said.
In its charge sheet, the cybercrime police said 28 persons were arrested in the case, including a key accused, Zhu Wei, and three other Chinese nationals. The kingpin of the racket, Zixia Zhang alias Jennifer, was still absconding. The racket was busted in December 2020 and the accused arrested over four months.
Police said the gang, headquartered in China’s Shanghai, offered instant loans through mobile applications. Several such instant loan applications, namely Loan Gram, Cash Train, Cash Bus, AAA Cash, Super Cash, Mint Cash, Happy Cash, Loan Card, Repay One, Money Box and Monkey box were hosted on Google Play Store, the cybercrime police chargesheet said.
Once the customers instal the apps, the company gets access to all contacts and other data from the mobile phone. The instant loans are granted on a commission ranging from 25 to 30 per cent.
They set up four call centres in various places of India and hired executives to collect repayments, including interest, processing charges, GST, default charges.
“These executives resorted to systematic abusing, harassing, and threatening of the defaulters through call centres run by them. They even blackmail the borrowers by sending fake legal notices to their relatives and family members,” the police said.
The accused were booked under Sections 420 and 506 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Section 66 of IT Act-2008, Sections 3, 10 and 13(1) of Telangana Moneylenders Act.