Mumbai, June 21: A 49-year-old businessman from Mumbai fell victim to a sophisticated online fraud orchestrated by cyber fraudsters posing as officials from various government agencies, including Customs, Delhi Police, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and even employees of a courier company. The fraudsters duped the businessman of Rs 1.3 crore by fabricating a false narrative involving fake money laundering and human trafficking charges. Upon realising the scam, the victim filed a case with the Mumbai cyber police, who are now investigating the incident that unfolded between April 30 and May 1.

According to a report by the Times of India, the ordeal began with a deceptive phone call on April 30, informing the victim that a parcel he allegedly sent to Malaysia had been intercepted by customs officials. The caller, impersonating a customs officer named Sumit Mishra, falsely claimed the parcel contained illegal items such as fake passports and narcotics. Adding to the ruse, the fraudsters linked these allegations to the victim's Aadhaar card, setting the stage for a series of coercive demands for money under the guise of legal proceedings. Online Fraud in Mumbai: Teen Loses Rs 2 Lakh While Playing Game on Mother’s Mobile Phone, Dies by Suicide.

Subsequently, the victim was contacted by another impersonator, claiming to be Sunil Kumar from Delhi police, who asserted that there was a Supreme Court case against him for money laundering and human trafficking. The fraudsters, further enhancing their deception, even used a WhatsApp video call featuring an individual posing as Anil Yadav, the purported CBI chief, who fabricated allegations of illegal fund transfers linked to the victim's Aadhaar details. Online Fraud in Mumbai: Man Poses as Police Inspector, Dupes College Professor of Rs 1 Lakh After Claiming Her Son Was Detained.

To add authenticity, the scammers sent a fake Supreme Court website link showing fabricated arrest warrants, compelling the victim to believe the seriousness of the situation. They coerced him into transferring Rs 1.3 crore to a supposed "Security Supervising Account" of the RBI to legalise his funds. Fortunately, the victim became suspicious and verified the scam through official channels, prompting him to alert the cyber crime police and report the incident to the cyber helpline. Upon investigation, the police were able to block an account containing Rs 9.82 lakh of the fraudulently obtained money.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jun 21, 2024 02:05 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website