The Mumbai Police is preparing a proposal,asking for at least one court in the city to be designated a fast-track court exclusively to hear economic offences. The proposal would soon be sent to the state government for its approval,Mumbai Police Commissioner Satyapal Singh said on Wednesday.
Singh added that cases like cheating,criminal breach of trust and online frauds involving money were on the rise and the proposal was aimed at ensuring speedy disposal of such cases as the Mumbai Police Crime Branchs specialised cells like the Economic Offences Wing and the Cyber Crime Cell were already overworked.
In some countries,there are separate courts for specific type of offences like fraud,which help ensure that cases are tried quickly. We are preparing a proposal for a fast track court in Mumbai,which will only deal with such cases. The proposal will soon be sent to the state government, the commissioner said.
The Maharashtra Police annual crime statistics indicates that economic offences have risen from 12,068 cases in 2008 to 13,974 cases in 2012. Out of these offences,cases of criminal breach of trust and cheating have also shown a steady increase over the last five years. Further,Mumbai tops the charts in serious fraud cases involving Rs 1 crore to 10 crore in 2012,with 35 cases being registered in the year.
We are also preparing a study of some new and unique methods in which some recent frauds were conducted and have noticed quite a few methods that were never used before, Singh further said.
Between April and May this year,a total of Rs 13 lakh was fraudulently withdrawn from 29 Axis Bank accounts in Mumbai,including 12 accounts belonging to Mumbai Police personnel. Subsequent investigations revealed that the accused,two Polish nationals,had allegedly installed skimming devices at the Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) of the bank,which enabled them to obtain account details,including the personal identification numbers of the accounts,through which the money was withdrawn.
We have issued Letter Rogatory (LR) for both the accused and are awaiting a response from the Polish government. We have confirmed the identities and whereabouts of the two accused, Singh said.