Nigerian held for online lottery fraud

May 7th, 2010 - 4:42 pm ICT by IANS  

Bhopal, May 7 (IANS) A 24-year-old Nigerian national accused of duping people of lakhs of rupees has been arrested from Mumbai for running an online lottery racket and has been brought to the Madhya Pradesh capital, police said Friday.
“The cyber cell of the state police have arrested a Nigerian national from Mumbai Wednesday for duping a youth of over Rs.4 lakh and another person of Rs.2.7 lakh,” Inspector General of Police (Cyber Cell) R.K. Mishra said.

The accused, identified as Osamudiamen Joseph, had sent an email to the complainant, Shailendra Singh Rathod, a resident of Morena in Madhya Pradesh, saying that Rathod had won an online lottery of Rs.5 crore.

During later emails and phone calls made from international numbers, Joseph convinced Rathod and got more than Rs.4 lakh deposited in a bank account towards processing fees and other formalities.

“While initially the victim was asked to deposit Rs.25,000 in the given bank account for getting customs clearance, later sums of Rs.1.37 lakh and then Rs.2.60 lakh were demanded in the name of getting other formalities completed,” a police officer said.

“Since Rathod was getting calls from international numbers, he was convinced that he had won the lottery and hence he kept on depositing the money as demanded by the miscreant,” the police officer added.

Rathod, however, had doubts when he was asked to deposit Rs.90,000 more as transfer fees and he filed a written complaint with the cyber cell of the police which registered a case of forgery and started investigations.

Police created a new email account in Rathod’s name for communicating with the accused and on ascertaining that Joseph was operating from Andheri West in Mumbai, laid a trap and arrested him. He was brought to Bhopal Thursday.

Another person, Akhil Argal, a resident of Bhopal, was cheated by Joseph in the same manner of Rs.2.7 lakh.

Investigating officer Deepak Thakur said that after arriving in India, the accused initially lived in Delhi and later shifted to Mumbai.

“The cyber cell has seized the accused’s laptop, four cell phones, passport, three SIM cards and other documents and found that he has been booked under charges of forgery in the past too and was currently out on bail,” Thakur told IANS.

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