Fake call centre scam: IRS official to discuss case details with Thane police

Since Thursday, when the US announced the crackdown on fake call centres, there has not been any communication passed on to the Thane police.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai | Published:October 30, 2016 12:37 am
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A MEMBER of the Indian Revenue Service (IRS) is expected to visit the Thane police next week in connection with the fake call centre scam they had busted. The IRS official will meet the Thane police commissioner, Param Bir Singh, to discuss the case details, and is also expected to take up details about the 61 people charged by the US Department of Justice in connection with the fake call centre scam in the United States.

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Since Thursday, when the US announced the crackdown on fake call centres, there has not been any communication passed on to the Thane police.

The Thane police officials had initially busted the racket by raiding unauthorised call centres running in Mira Road-Bhayander stretch, from where fraudulent calls were made to the US.

Soon after, an official from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had contacted the Thane police to discuss the matter.

A senior officer said, “An IRS official was expected on Thursday itself, but it had to be delayed. We are expecting the visit anytime soon. We are hopeful of getting information on the people charged by the US in connection with the scam.” As per information with the Thane police officials so far, there are at least a few names that are common to both the US probe and the one carried out by the Thane police.

“As per the information we have, the US police too has found the role of Sagar Thakkar alias Shaggy, whose role had been unearthed by US during the probe as well,” an officer said.

The police had on Thursday seized an Audi R-8 car from Rohtak, that Thakkar had purchased from cricketer Virat Kohli earlier this year.

Police suspect that the vehicle had been purchased with the proceeds that Thakkar earned by running the bogus call centres. The police will be recording the statement of the Delhi-based agent who helped transfer the Audi R-8 vehicle from Virat Kohli to Thakkar.

“He will help us know the amount at which the Audi was purchased by Thakkar,” the officer said.

The call centre scam was busted on October 5 when the Thane police had raided 12 call centres in the Mira Road-Bhayander area where employees would make calls to US citizens posing to be from their Internal Revenue Service (IRS). They would then threaten the US citizen to instantly settle the tax default by making a payment to them.

The police suspect that Ahmedabad was the hub of these call centres and those who were successfully operating these call centres there had then moved to the Mira Road-Bhayander stretch.

The US Justice Department on Thursday had charged 61 persons in connection with the IRS scam including US citizens.