700 people in Mumbai lose Rs 40 crore to ‘realty scheme’, four booked
The gang gave huge returns to their relatives who invested in their company. The relatives spread a word about the scheme, thus attracting more people.Updated: Jun 26, 2018 09:49 IST
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
The economic offences wing (EOW) has booked a gang of four for cheating 700 people in the city of Rs 40 crore by promising “high returns on their investment in the real estate sector”. The four, who were arrested in connection with a similar case a few months ago, are in judicial custody.
The racket was unearthed when Nasir Shaikh filed a complaint against Raeesa Poonawala, her husband Mustafa Baig, Tanveer Shaikh and Nisha Khan. “The four accused opened a company, RS Traders, and got a swanky office. They used to convince people to invest in their company, stating they would further invest the money in real estate projects in Versova and Ajmer in Rajasthan. They promised to give 1.5 times the invested amount within 100 days,” said an EOW official.
Initially, they gave huge returns to their relatives who invested in their company. The relatives spread a word about the scheme, thus attracting more people. “Seven hundred people invested in the scheme in cash. Most of them didn’t even get a receipt. Raeesa, the mastermind, used to tell investors that even if the scheme failed, she can easily return the money using the insurance policies her first husband opened in her name,” an official said.
The investments made were in the range of Rs 50,000 to Rs 40 lakh. When investors started to ask about the returns after 100 days, Raeesa would come up with some excuse. “Most investors are from poor families. Some of them sold their homes, while some took a bank loan to invest,” said another official.
As the investors approached the Santacruz police, the senior brass transferred the case to the EOW, as it would need a dedicated probe. The police have booked the four under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and Maharashtra Protection of Interests of Depositors (MPID) act.
The police have, so far, recovered Rs 5.86 lakh from the accused. “We are checking if they invested the money in properties. If such details crop up, the properties will be attached. EOW is in the process of seeking their custody,” another officer said.
First Published: Jun 26, 2018 09:48 IST