A Thane police team left for Goa on Monday after an accused in the alleged cryptocurrency scam, against whom an official look-out notice had been issued, was detained at Goa airport. The accused has been identified as Vijay Bangera.
Thane Police Commissioner Vivek Phansalkar said: “We got information that he had landed at Goa airport. A team is going to take the accused into custody. Bangera is a close associate of accused Amit Lakhanpal, sources said.
“We will be able to comment on his role once he (Bangera) is taken into custody,” an officer said.
In June, the Thane crime branch had busted a cryptocurrency racket allegedly run by Lakhanpal — currently believed to be in Dubai along with four others — who cheated nearly 2,500 investors in 10 months. According to the police, the people lost Rs 500 crore after investing in cryptocurrency that had been launched by Lakhanpal at a well-known hotel in Dubai in September last year.
While Thane police had arrested an accused, several others, including Lakhanpal, had been declared absconding. Sources said that look-out notices had been issued against four accused, including Lakhanpal.
Cryptocurrency is banned in India. But Lakhanpal, based on fake documents, duped investors, sources said. “Once the money had been invested, people realised that they could neither withdraw nor use it. That is when they approached the police. There are more than 500 complainants,” an officer privy to the case said.
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