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THE CYBER cell has identified a Malegaon-based NGO, The Alqama Education and Welfare Society, in Nashik district of Maharashtra, which was being headed by one of the accused, Rajesh Sharma, one of the three involved in the fraudulent transfer of money from the stolen credit or debit cards of foreign nationals. Rajesh Sharma and his two other associates, Pawan Singh and Ankush Sharma, who are hackers, used to purchase data of debit or credit cards by paying bitcoins to their counterparts in Hongkong and Patna.
Sources said The Alqama Education and Welfare Society has been blacklisted by the Maharashtra government and there are chances of the accused having diverted money received from the hacked cards to the NGO’s account. Police have also identified two other stakeholders, a man and a woman, in the blacklisted NGO, including Shaikh Ibrahim Natthumiya and Tayyaba Mohammed Shaban. On the website of the NGO, Rajesh was mentioned as treasurer and president of Punjab region of the NGO.
Inspector Harinder Singh Sekhon said, “The NGO was registered in February 1998 and it also had a valid registration number under Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA). The NGO had its bank account at the Corporation Bank branch in Dhule, Maharashtra. The details of this account is being verified.”
Three teams have been dispatched to Delhi, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh to ascertain the whereabouts of other associates of Rajesh and his two accomplices. Meanwhile, Hongkong, Indonesia, Dubai, Thailand were the prime destinations from where the hackers preferred to purchase the data on debit/credit cards after paying bitcoins and dollars to their two counterparts, including one settled in Hongkong.
As Rajesh, a resident of Zirakpur, was not familiar with online trading, he had hired the qualified hackers, Pawan and Ankur. Three of the accused have been remanded in police custody for 10 days.