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Sunday, January 23, 2022

Mumbai: Woman seeking to book a villa duped of Rs 72,000, two arrested

Police said that the two accused, who are residents of Mumbai, were running the racket for the past few years.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
January 2, 2022 2:35:39 am
Police said initial probe showed that the gang used to kidnap or steal infants from Delhi and sell them for Rs 3-4 lakh in neighbouring states. (Representational)

With the arrest of two people, the Mumbai cyber cell officials claim to have busted a gang that allegedly duped people under the pretext of facilitating booking villas at hill stations for holidays or functions.

Police said that the two accused, who are residents of Mumbai, were running the racket for the past few years. They had opened a website and had also posted an advertisement on the same on social media sites, and when people approached them asking to book villas at Lonavala, Goa and Alibaug, the accused would take the money and vanish.

The two arrested persons have been identified as Aakash Jadhvani (21) and Avinash Jadhvani (29).
Police said that on December 27, a middle-aged woman approached their office at BKC and lodged a complaint that she was duped of Rs 72,000. In her statement, the complainant alleged that she was planning to book a villa at Lonavala for December 31.

“She came across a profile on Instagram (luxury.villas.lonavala) through a friend and shortlisted a few villas in that profile and finalised one villa,” said an officer. The woman then reached out to the account holder, when one of the accused identified himself as Hardik and started chatting with the complainant.

He said that the charge for a night is Rs 72,000 for a villa in Lonavala. Subsequently, to finalise the booking, she sent the amount and accordingly she received an email confirming the same.

However, later when she was unable to reach out to the caretakers of the villa, she found something amiss.

“The woman then managed to get the number of the villa’s owner, which the accused had claimed that they booked on her behalf and realised that she had been duped,” said an officer.

During the investigation, police managed to trace the accused to Viman Nagar in Pune. “They were operating from a five-star hotel,” said an officer.

The two accused were taken into custody and brought to Mumbai and they confessed to the crime.
Investigators said that there are at least 12 cases of cheating registered against the duo in Mumbai, Navi Mumbai and Thane. The accused were produced in court on Saturday and were remanded in police custody.

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