A 53-year-old stockbroker was arrested Thursday for allegedly committing fraud and duping his client of shares worth around Rs 50 lakh. The arrest was made after the police laid a trap for the accused who promised to exchange Rs 10 lakh in old currency, now invalid after demonetisation, with new bills of Rs 2,000 for his client.
In 2011, accused Paresh Babubhai Verma had allegedly transferred shares worth Rs 23 lakh from his client’s demat account to his and his mother’s account, claimed the aggrieved client who is the complainant in the case. Having evaded his client as well as the police for long, the accused was finally nabbed late Wednesday night from his Vile Parle West residence. Verma is believed to have also duped several other clients of their money. The police are also investigating his mother Gunwanti Verma’s alleged role in the fraud.
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“The accused had been evading me for years and I was yet to receive my money. Finally, on the police’s advice, I asked him if he could exchange old notes worth Rs 10 lakh with new notes of Rs 2,000 for me. He quickly agreed and said he could exchange old money worth up to Rs 3 crore. He asked me to meet him at 8.30 pm Wednesday at his residence for the exchange. I informed the police and they went and picked him up,” said the complainant and Verma’s client Kekin Shah.
According to Shah, Verma was his stockbroker and he had known him for 10 years. In October 2011, when Verma was in trouble related to a fraud and needed money, he allegedly transferred Shah’s shares worth Rs 23 lakh to his and his mother’s account. The complainant claimed that those shares were worth about Rs 38 lakh now and the amount could go up to about Rs 50 lakh after adding dividends and bonuses.
“By December 2011, I came to know that he had cheated me. He denied any wrongdoing when I confronted him. I lodged a complaint against him at the Juhu police station in February 2012. Verma and his family then pleaded for some time and promised to pay me back. I agreed then as I had known him for long. But he never paid me back,” Shah said.
He lodged another complaint against Verma at the MIDC police station in June 2016. Shah claimed that the accused had cheated a few women in the same manner four months ago. He also claimed that Verma had at least 10 bank accounts.
The police have charged the accused under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code. Andheri court remanded the accused to police custody till 5 December, said an officer at the M.I.D.C. Police station in Andheri.