Kingpin siphoned off Rs 1.09 cr of Rajasthan govt schemehttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/mumbai/kingpin-siphoned-off-rs-1-09-cr-of-rajasthan-govt-scheme/

Kingpin siphoned off Rs 1.09 cr of Rajasthan govt scheme

Tazdar is suspected of having stolen a cheque meant for the employment guarantee scheme.

The Rajasthan Police have contacted the Mumbai police’s Crime Branch in connection with a case of fraud involving Rs one crore,which phishing and account hacking mastermind Muzammil Tazdar allegedly orchestrated in 2011.

Tazdar is suspected of having stolen a cheque meant for the employment guarantee scheme in Rajasthan and diverting the money to an account that he created under a false identity.

According to Crime Branch officials,the case was registered with the Kotwali police station at Nagor in Rajasthan in 2011. The Crime Branch is yet to receive the complete case file,but has gathered the basic details of the crime.

“A cheque for Rs 1.09 crore meant for the office of the employment guarantee scheme in Rajasthan was being sent there via Mumbai. A courier agency was in charge of picking up the cheque from Mumbai and taking it to Rajasthan. Tazdar,through his network of underlings that he always kept between himself and the actual commission of the crime,befriended the courier boy who was supposed to pick up the cheque. When the courier boy picked it up in Mumbai,one of Tazdar’s underlings met him and took it from him. The cheque was passed down a long chain to Tazdar,” said an officer.

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Tazdar allegedly created a bank account in Mumbai in the name of one Rajan Sharma and one of his contacts deposited the cheque in his account. Within days,another accomplice withdrew the entire amount. The accomplices who deposited the cheque and withdrew the money received larger share of the money while others in the chain were paid less,the police said.

Inspector N R Chaudhary of Kotwali police station,confirmed that the case had been registered with them. “We had arrested 12 accused in the case back in 2011,” Chaudhari said.

Meanwhile,the Crime Branch’s cyber cell has found out that a person wanted in two different cases,identified as Sumit Singh,is none other than Tazdar himself operating under one of his many aliases. They have now sought his custody for interrogation in these two cases. The Navi Mumbai police have also sought Tazdar’s custody in a similar case,sources said.

“We are also looking into a complaint registered with the Delhi Police,in which Tazdar is supposed to have been the mastermind,” said an officer.

Tazdar,who had injured himself while trying to evade arrest earlier this month,was formally arrested a week ago after he was discharged from GT Hospital. He had allegedly transferred Rs 12.5 lakh from actor Raveena Tandon’s husband Anil Thadani’s account to his own. He was involved in similar crimes in Thane,Navi Mumbai and Nashik,police said.

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Tazdar has reportedly told police that over the past two years,he had built a multi-layered network of fall guys around himself to ensure that his scams were not traced back to him,using three-four people between himself and his victims.

Police said he started his career in crime around two years ago after being mentored by another expert cyber criminal.

“Tazdar aspired to be a model. We have found an entire portfolio of modelling photographs among his belongings. However,he could not succeed as a model. Around two-and-a half years ago,he met a man identified as Rinku Sabharwal,who,according to Tazdar,is an expert in crimes involving hacking and phishing. Sabharwal allegedly trained Tazdar,who started committing such crimes in 2011. We are checking if Sabharwal has a record,” said an officer with the Crime Branch.

gautam.mengle@expressindia.com

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