How Flipkart got conned by a Punjab gang via ‘easy return policy’
The would order only costly mobile phones and when these were delivered, would call up the company to complain about quality issues. To the representatives sent to collect these handsets, they would hand over fake mobile phones in the box.punjab Updated: Mar 02, 2016 17:25 IST
A gang here exploited the easy-return policy of leading e-commerce portal Flipkart to cheat the company of at least Rs 25 lakh; police said the con may be worth Rs 1 crore.
The district police have arrested five people under sections 420 (cheating), 465 (punishment for forgery), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating) , 471 (using a forged item as genuine), and 120-B (punishment for criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and relevant sections of the Information Technology Act.
“Accused Suresh Kumar, Gagandeep Singh, Yadvendra Singh, Kuldeep Singh, Kuldeep Singh and Sandeep Singh used to book orders online and return goods on delivery after replacing them with fakes,” said station house officer (SHO) concerned Harpal Singh.
How they did it
o The gang included a mobile-phone retailer, besides a SIM-card seller who created fake email IDs and booked orders. They would order only costly mobile phones and when these were delivered, would call up the company to complain about quality issues. To the representatives sent to collect these handsets, they would hand over fake mobile phones in the box. The money paid through different banks would come back to their accounts before the goods reached the dealer.
o Police claim to have recovered Rs 17 lakh cash, 10 handsets, and a laptop computer from the gang. They say this fraud might run into more than Rs 1 crore “once we track all the mobile phones that the gang has sold further”. “The accused, so far, has accepted making at least Rs 80 lakh in the swindle,” said SHO Harvinder Singh Sra, who is part of the investigation team.
o A senior official at Flipkart told HT how the network was busted. “Whenever a customer contacts us to return any item, we credit the money into his account immediately and check the item later when it gets to us within a week. In this case, a number of complaints from the same area prompted us to call the Mansa cops,” said Flipkart deputy general manager Manoj Chaudhary.
A local court has remanded all accused in police custody for five days.