Three men were arrested for allegedly cheating over 100 people of approximately Rs 7 crore on the pretext of providing higher returns by investing in the business of fisheries, floriculture and plantation of medical trees, police said on Wednesday.
The accused — Rajesh Kumar Laura (45), Ravi (28) and Gajanand Kaushik (41) — misappropriated around Rs 7 crore from 135 victims, they said.
Accused Laura is the kingpin of the alleged scam. He had mobilized the investors in collusion with his associates, police said, adding a case was registered against them in 2019 at Economic Offences Wing unit for running a ponzy scheme.
According to police, in his complaint, one of the victim reported that on the allurement of the accused, he invested money in the partnership firm on the pretext that invested money will be used for the business of fisheries, floriculture and plantation of medicinal trees.
The accused promised him of high returns in very short span of time and also told the prospective investors that the end product will be sold in foreign countries, which would fetch them high returns, police said.
Senior police official RK Singh said the complainant invested a sum of Rs 52 lakh in the alleged firm, but it failed to deliver returns as promised and later the accused closed their business overnight and ran away.
“During investigation, bank accounts of the alleged company were scrutinized and data was analysed. Investigation revealed that the alleged firm had allured public at large to invest money in their business of fisheries, floriculture and plantation of medicinal trees. Based on their allurements, the complainants deposited the given amount with the alleged people,” the senior police officer said.
During investigation, it was also found that both Kaushik and Ravi were the authorised signatories of the bank accounts where the investor’s money was credited and further siphoned off, he said.