January 25, 2021 12:44:57 am
The UP Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) has arrested two Chinese nationals, identified as Pochnli Tengli alias Li Teng alias Alice and Xu Xunfu alias Julahi, in connection with financial fraud after they allegedly bought SIM cards with forged documents.
The two were held in Noida on Saturday based on information provided by 14 people arrested on January 17 in connection with a financial scam.
In a statement on Sunday, the ATS said, “The ATS, Uttar Pradesh, got information that a gang is conspiring and is procuring SIM cards on fake IDs and then are opening online bank accounts. They were exchanging money after indulging in cheating through the accounts. The money was being forwarded for use in criminal activities. When the information was verified and checked, it came to the fore that some criminals had opened bank accounts putting in fake details in different banks. These bank accounts were receiving money from an unidentified source which was being drawn by different means. With regard to this, the ATS had on January 17 made 14 arrests. A red-corner notice and a blue-corner notice were issued against the absconding Chinese accused, who were arrested from Noida on Saturday.”
The ATS said during preliminary questioning it came to light that the Chinese used to procure pre-activated SIM cards from distributors and retailers after those passed through several people in Delhi.
“The pre-activated SIM cards used to be made available to the manager of a hotel owned by a Chinese couple in Gurgaon. One of them [the couple] used to stay in China, and the accused were connected to them through WeChat,” read the statement.
The ATS added, “On directions of the owners of the hotel, the OTP for WhatsApp registration was shared with the Chinese nationals. The two accused do not know who was using the 150 activated WhatsApp numbers and where they were being used.”
An ATS officer said it was still not clear where the WhatsApp, for which OTPs were shared, accounts were being used since the messaging app is not used in China. “China does not have WhatsApp, and we are still trying to unearth where the WhatsApp was being used,” the officer added.
The ATS said till date the two accused had given 1,000 pre-activated SIM cards to the hotel owners. According to the squad, Li Teng alias Alice’s business visa expired in September 2020, while Xu Xunfu’s business visa expired the month before that.
An officer said the two would be presented in court and their remand would be sought for questioning.
“The fake bank accounts were opened in people’s names without their knowledge using pre-activated SIM cards. Then, money was sent to these accounts and was transferred to these bank accounts and was withdrawn through cardless transactions. We are still probing where the money was being used. We are also still unearthing the different layers in the scam. There are a total of 12 layers that have come to light till now. All these things will become clear in the coming days,” said the ATS officer.
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