Nigerian national held for matrimony fraud

Wed 05 Dec 2018, 12:32:53
A 30-year-old Nigerian, who came to India got his visiting visa converted to business visa and started cheating women. The accused posing as a highly qualified professional on the matrimony websites lured several women and collected huge amounts of money.

Rachakonda cyber crime police arrested Abel Odara, 30, from Noida and seized several electronic items from his possession used to commit the offences.

A woman living in Hyderabad city, who was looking for a prospective groom created a profile on Shaadi.com. She received a message from the profile of Dr Ayush Tyagi, a widower, expressing interest to marry her. They conversed over phone and Tyagi told the woman that he wanted to migrate to India and settle in Hyderabad along with his daughter, as his wife had died in a car accident. He also shared his travel plan with the woman and told her that he would arrive on August 8 at Mumbai.

On August 8, the woman received a phone call from a stranger claiming to be an official working for the Customs Department at the Mumbai airport that Tyagi had been taken into custody for laundering Rs 3 crore. of money and she had to pay Rs 5.45 lakh to release him.

The innocent woman deposited the money asked by the stranger in different bank accounts provided to her. But later she lost communication with both men.

Realising that she was being cheated, she lodged a complaint with Rachakonda cyber crime police who booked a case under Sections 417, 419, 420, 468 and 471 r/w 34 of IPC and Section 66 (C&D) of IT Act.

The police arrested Odara at Noida, who had created the profile on the matrimonial site and conversed with the victim.

Rachakonda Police Commissioner Mr Mahesh Bhagwat said “Adel Odara is one of the most wanted criminals, indulging in cyber frauds. He came to India in 2014 on a visit visa and got it converted to business visa. On learning that several African nationals were making easy money through matrimonial frauds, as victims were not complaining to the police, he also adopted the same modus operandi.”

The Commissioner said that the accused had used pictures of handsome men in the matrimonial profile and posed as a highly qualified and earning professional seeking a bride.

After chatting for a few days, the accused informed the victim that he would send gifts like phones, jewellery and cash. Other members of his gang posing as customs officials started contacting the victim to extract money to release the gifts.

“The cyber fraudsters are taking the help of Indian women, mostly hailing from North Eastern states living in Delhi and NCR (national capital region) to talk to the victims in the regional language and coaxing them to deposit money in their various bank accounts. They are given a commission for doing this", said the Commissioner.

He said that the arrested accused Abel Odara was remanded to judicial custody and would be taken into custody for further investigation to identify the other accused.

The police team which nabbed the accused has seized four laptops, 13 mobile phones, two passports, routers, dongles, Tabs, driving licenses, identification cards, one debit card and a bank passbook.

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