Pak national among 4 held in lottery scam

Four persons,including a Pakistan national,were arrested by the Crime Branch of Delhi Police in a fake lottery case on Friday.

Written by Shalini Narayan | New Delhi | Published:May 12, 2012 12:56 am

Four persons,including a Pakistan national,were arrested by the Crime Branch of Delhi Police in a fake lottery case on Friday.

The arrests followed investigations into a complaint that mobile phone users were receiving calls from Pakistan informing them that they had won a lottery.

Police said that questioning of the arrested men revealed that the gang was also operating a TV recharge coupon racket in Pakistan.

“We unearthed the racket after we got information that mobile users were getting calls from Pakistan saying that they have won a lottery worth millions of rupees,” said a police officer.

The earnings from the racket were being transferred to Pakistan through Hawala channels,stated the FIR,a copy of which is with Newsline .

The four arrested men have been identified as Veer Chandra Singh,a tea-stall owner,Hari Kishan Bhatia,a Punjab-based exporter,Balram from Bihar,and Mohammed Akram Chaudhary,a Pakistan national who was living illegally in Ludhiana. Earlier,another gang member,Ravi,was arrested from Wazirpur.

“Since the Pakistan phone numbers are different from ours,mobile phone users usually answer the calls. They are then told that they have won a lottery. The user would be asked to deposit a few lakhs into a particular bank account to avail the prize money. This money is then siphoned to Pakistan,” the officer said.

The gang also ran a separate racket involving TV recharge coupons in Pakistan,police said.

“Subscribers in Pakistan would purchase coupons through members of the gang. The gang would charge these subscribers more than the coupon amount and get the recharge done through their members in India. A commission of the earnings was split between Veer,Bhatia and Balram,” the officer said.

Police said the number from which the calls were made was traced to Wazirpur from where Ravi was arrested.

At least 17 SIM cards,including a Pakistani one,were recovered from him.

Police said Veer Chandra Singh would make the calls to customers. Once the money was deposited,Balram would transfer it to his account and then hand it over to Bhatia. It was then sent to Pakistan through Akram.

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