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Friday, Aug 23, 2019

Bike Bot fraud: Making the 10th arrest, police nabs company’s CEO

The suspect was identified as Tarun Sharma, a resident of Vikas Nagar, Delhi. He was arrested by a special investigation team of the Noida Economic Offences Wing(NEOW) from Barola T-point based on a tip.

noida Updated: Aug 14, 2019 00:47 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Noida
         

The Noida police made the 10th arrest in the Bike Bot ponzi scheme on Tuesday after they nabbed the chief executive officer (CEO) of the company allegedly responsible for duping more than two lakh people.

The suspect was identified as Tarun Sharma, a resident of Vikas Nagar, Delhi. He was arrested by a special investigation team of the Noida Economic Offences Wing(NEOW) from Barola T-point based on a tip.

Sheelesh Kumar, inspector, NEOW said Sharma was responsible for looking after administrative work for the company and was fully aware of the fraud. He had been working in the company since 2018 as the CEO and was an MBA from Pune.

Sanjay Bhati had allegedly set up GIPL in 2010, which allegedly the floated Bike Bot scheme in 2017. The company had sought ₹62,000 as an investment per motorcycle from investors, promising them ₹9,765 as returns per month for one year. The offer drew around 2.25 lakh investors who were later allegedly duped. The whole operation is estimated to be ₹2,000 crore ponzi scheme.

Investors of the Bike Bot scheme had filed at least 46 cases against company officials in different police stations. GIPL’s owner Sanjay Bhati and three directors Vijay Pal Kasana, Vinod Chauhan, Rajesh Bharadwaj, and a liaison officer Adesh Bhati, are in judicial custody.

Police have arrested nine people in the case so far. Three additional directors of the company were arrested on August 5 by a special investigation team while one more arrest was made on August 6.

The Noida police on August 9 had also announced a reward of ₹ 25,000 each for information on 11 suspects, who remain at large, in connection with the ponzi scheme.

The police clarified that Sharma was not one of the 11 persons they had announced the reward for.

“He is not one of the 11 suspects that remain at large. His name came up during our investigation and after questioning from a few investors,” Kumar said.

“Sharma’s main job was to oversee the administrative operations of the company; be it employing the drivers, designing the app, online registration of bikes among other things. He would also handle customer care. While he did work as the CEO, no appointment letter was issued to him by the company but he had been given a Maruti Breza for official work,” Kumar said.

Police officers said before he started working for Bhati, Sharma had also planned to launch his own venture which had not taken off. “He has also held managerial positions in some MNCs. In Garvit Innovative, he would also deal with out of town investors and was receiving ₹80,000 salary per month,” Kumar said.

First Published: Aug 13, 2019 22:45 IST

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