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Online thug lands in STF trap

THE SPECIAL Task Force (STF) on Sunday busted a 'on-line' fraud through which a youth identified as Amit Kumar Singh Chauhan duped people of lakhs of rupees.
None | By HT Live Correspondent
PUBLISHED ON JUL 31, 2006 12:59 AM IST

THE SPECIAL Task Force (STF) on Sunday busted a 'on-line' fraud through which a youth identified as Amit Kumar Singh Chauhan duped people of lakhs of rupees.
A luxury car, mobile phone, ATM cards, computer, PAN cards and bank cheque books were recovered from his possession. Chauhan, resident of Hardoi, was at present putting up at 21/1034 Indira Nagar.

He is a computer graduate and had got a bank account opened on the basis of a fake driving license. The youth used to dupe people after posting the details of various accessories to be sold online on the website www.eBay.in  of an “online” marketing company eBay. After the online deal was settled, Chauhan used to give the bank account number on which the money was to be transferred to the buyer. The unsuspecting buyer used to pay the cash online and never received the goods that were ordered.

SSP STF SK Bhagat told newspersons on Sunday that eBay Company officials informed them Pradeep Kumar Singh, a resident of 18/266 Indiranagar had posted details of various gadgets etc to be sold on the company's website and had mentioned his IDBI account number (015104000171168) as well. The online marketing company's officials further told the STF that even after the buyer had made the payment online at the account number mentioned on the site, the delivery of goods was not made.

Subsequently, SSP STF set up a team comprising of additional superintendent of police (ASP) Vijay Bhushan and Shahab Rasheed Khan. The team found that there was no one with the name of Pradeep Kumar Singh.

The STF then gathered that Hardoi resident Amit Kumar Singh Chauhan was actually the one who was indulging in online fraud in the name of Pradeep. On Sunday, the STF arrested him from near the Lekhraj Market in Indiranagar. Chauhan reportedly has confessed to his crime.

He said he had duped several people now of about Rs 12 lakh and the STF suspects that the fraud could have been far bigger had they not arrested the online conman. SSP STF said that the eBay company's office was in foreign land and its annual turnover was worth Rs 34,000 crore. “203 million people in 33 countries are using the site to buy and sell things online and thus it was difficult for the company to detect the fraud instantly,” he said.

Chauhan told newspersons that he started committing frauds after losing Rs 6000 that he had invested on purchasing a mobile phone online on this company's site. “I made the payment yet never received the cell phone. That was when the idea of doing something similar struck me,” he said.

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