Man held for cyber fraud in Noida

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Noida (UP), Nov 15: An absconding man, who had allegedly duped several people by promising to double their money if they clicked on advertisements on a particular website, has been arrested by the Noida Police, officials said Thursday.

Accused Shivdutt Sharma, 35, who was on the run for more than 16 months, was picked up from Bulandshahr by a joint team of Sector 58 Police Station and the Noida Cyber Cell, they said.

Sharma along with his five partners Ajay Gupta, Deepak Rajput, Manoj Gupta, Naveen and Nirmit Gupta had floated a fake company whose office was set up in Sector 62 of the city, police said.

“Sharma and his partners would tell gullible people about their company which doubled people’s money in just two to three months. They told the targets that the method was simple and one was required to just click on advertisements on the website to earn the money,” Station House Officer, Sector 58, Pankaj Rai said.

“On one account there would be 70 clicks available and each click could earn them Rs 7. The money would get transferred into their accounts and there would be an additional bonus as well,” he said, explaining the modus operandi of the crime.

However, interested person would have to submit Rs 56,000 to open an identity account on the website and also get another two persons linked to the business, officials said.

A complaint was filed at Sector 58 Police Station in June 2017 about the fraud when a woman accused the company and the five men of running away with her money.

“The woman said she was lured into this ‘double money’ business by Sharma, whose son was known to her son. He and his partners spoke highly of their company and assured her that the money was in safe hands,” officials said.

The woman asked her relatives to join the scheme but when they approached Sharma for money, they were told to cooperate for some time because the owners were planning to relocate to Thailand to capture bigger markets and ensure more profits to investors, the woman’s complaint read.

After a couple of months, the accused told the complainant and other investors that they would be making payments in Bitcoins and not in Indian currency but within a few days they shut their Sector 62 office and fled, police said.

“The woman said when she tried calling on the given phone numbers of the business they were all found switched off,” police said, adding she then approached the police and an FIR was filed.

Charges under the Indian Penal Code sections 420 (fraud) and 406 (criminal breach of trust) besides the Information Technology Act were pressed against the accused men, police said.

Sharma has been arrested from Bulandshahr and remanded in judicial custody, while attempts were on to nab the others, police said.PTI