A TEAM of the cyber cell of UT Police failed to get custody of the four key accused, including Amit Bhardwaj and Vivek Bhardwaj, the alleged perpetrators of the multicrore Bitcoin scam, in Pune on Thursday. Pune police handed over the four accused to the Enforcement Directorate (ED) instead. As a result, the cyber cell team will be returning empty-handed from Pune.
The cyber cell team, comprising a sub-inspector and three other policemen, who were assured by their counterparts in Pune police that the custody of the four accused would be given to them, had gone to Pune with production warrants of the four accused on June 20.
The accused Amit Bhardwaj and Vivek Bhardwaj are brothers and Amit is the CEO and founder of Gain Bitcoin, GB Minors and GB 21 firms, through which he and his associates lured the investors.
The two other accused, against whom production warrants were procured by Chandigarh Police on May 22, were Pankaj Shriandkishore Adalakha and Surinder.
Sources said, “A team of the cyber cell was dispatched to Pune after getting verbal assurance from Pune police that the four accused would be handed over to them. But as the police party approached a local court in Pune, Pune police apprised them that the custody of the four had been given to the Enforcement Directorate, which is also probing the multicrore MLM Bitcoin scam.
ED is a central agency, which is probing this multicrore MLM Bitcoin scam separately from the police departments of Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Bengaluru and Chandigarh.”
DSP (Cyber) Rashmi Yadav Sharma said, “Though we were not given custody of the four accused, including Amit Bhardwaj and his brother Vivek Bhardwaj, the time limit of production warrants against these four accused is valid till August 25. The ED personnel of Pune took custody of the four accused for one week. We have one FIR against these accused and 10 other complaints against them. The total value of cheating, which is being probed by the cyber cell of Chandigarh Police, is around Rs 12 crore.”
Over nine FIRs were registered against the Bhardwajs and their other associates in Delhi, Pune, Maharashtra and Bengaluru.
The accused Amit, along with his brother Vivek Bhardwaj, residents of Shalimar Garden in Delhi, was arrested by the Pune police at IGI Airport in Delhi when the two brothers arrived from Bangkok on June 6. Since then, they have been in the custody of Maharashtra Police, Delhi Police, Pune police and ED.