One more person was arrested on Friday in connection with the call center scam that was done from Mira road in Pune, India. This arrest has taken the number of people arrested in relation with the scam to seventy five, the city police informed. According to Senior Police Inspector Nitin Thackeray, the arrest was made from the Mira road locality last evening, when the accused, Akhilesh Ajay Singh (29) visited his residence. Akhilesh Ajay Singh was absconding since the police unearthed the scam last month. Read more on arrests
ACP Mukund Hatote, the Investigating Officer (IO) in the case, told that Singh helped his brother-in-law, Chandan Ajit Singh to get the scam done from Hari Om IT Park, near Delta Garden building on Mira road. The call centers were located on the second and fourth floors of the building in the IT Park. He also helped his friend, Sunny, get the fifth and seventh floors there, he added. Akhilesh Ajay Singh was produced before a magistrate’s court today which remanded him to police custody till November 7th, 2016.
The scam, wherein US – based taxpayers were conned by Indian call center agents, pretending to be American tax and immigration officials, came to light in October when the police raided a group of call centers at Mira road in Pune. Subsequently, police teams also raided and shut down five call centers in Ahmedabad which too were involved in the scam. Last week, the police had seized a luxury car belonging to Sagar Thakkar alias Shaggy, the kingpin of the scam. The Audi car, valued at Rs 2.5 crores, was seized by Thane police from Ahmedabad and was allegedly purchased from a leading cricketer in May, 2016.
The Mira road scam targeted about fifteen thousand American citizens. According to US Homeland Security Secretary, Jeh Johnson, these call centers ‘stole’ over USD 300 million from the victims! The US Justice Department has charged sixty one people and entities linked to the scam where call center agents ‘impersonated’ the IRS, immigration and other federal officials and demanded payments for non – existent debts. Read more on scams
The Mira road call center scam has seriously damaged the image of India in the minds of the citizens of U.S. It is also shameful that the scammers cheated as much as $300 million from innocent U.S. citizens and went undetected for so many months before they were caught. The master – mind of the scam, Shaggy, made enough money to buy an Audi car, that too from a famous cricketer. Another shameful thing is that the builders/owners of Hari Om IT Tech Park had rented the second and fourth floors of the building to Chandan Ajit Singh, without properly verifying the integrity of him and his company. The number of people (who are from different cities in India) who were involved in the scam is also a highly shameful thing. Seventy five people cheating innocent American citizens (of a whopping $300 million) for the sake of salary or money or job is a highly deplorable act which has seriously dented India’s image in the minds of the citizens of the U.S. They might have probably been involved in this scam because they were frustrated and unemployed youth. The government of India should take this issue seriously and not only bring the scammers to justice; it must also create millions of jobs in the public and private sectors throughout the country to minimize the chances of such large scams happening in the country, for these kinds of scams will only dent the image of India throughout the world. Read more on Startup news