Duo dupe Pune lawyer of ₹25 lakh in money-doubling scam | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times
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Duo dupe Pune lawyer of 25 lakh in money-doubling scam

ByManish K Pathak
May 29, 2024 08:30 AM IST

Park Site police in Mumbai are searching for two individuals, including a taxi driver, for allegedly scamming a lawyer of ₹25 lakh by promising to double his money.

MUMBAI: The Park Site police have launched a manhunt for two persons, including a taxi driver, for allegedly duping a 55-year-old Pune-based lawyer of 25 lakh under the pretext of doubling his money.

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The complainant, Popat Tejraj Gandhi, a lawyer living in Pune with his family, met the accused in Powai. They exchanged bags containing 50 lakh in cash. The accused made him sit in a taxi and kept the bag in the car’s trunk. The taxi driver dropped the victim at Ghatkopar, but before he could collect the bag from the trunk, he fled.

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Gandhi alleged in the FIR that he met the accused, Deva, through a common friend in Baramati a few years ago. He later overheard Deva telling his driver, Laxman Bhosale, that he would double the money if someone gave him 20 lakh or more.

After the exchange, Deva and Bhosale were constantly in touch. The complainant and his driver came to Mumbai on May 18 for work and decided to meet Deva as he was curious to know how he would double the money. They met at a five-star hotel near Marine Drive.

The victim was carrying 5 lakh cash, but Deva said the amount was much less, and he required at least twenty-five to thirty lakh, which he could double, said a police officer.

They again met near Hiranandani hospital at 6.30pm, but the victim was again carrying only 5 lakh cash and therefore, Deva refused to accept it and insisted on 25 lakh, added the officer.

On May 25, the complainant, his wife and driver Bhosale came to Mumbai carrying 25 lakh in their car from Pune. They decided to meet near Powai on May 26. Gandhi’s wife wanted to buy an iPod, so they first went to Vijay Sales in Ghatkopar. As per Deva’s advice, Gandhi parked his car in Ghatkopar. After this, Gandhi and his driver took an auto and went to meet Deva near Hiranandani hospital in Powai, added the officer.

Gandhi handed over the bag containing 25 lakh to Deva. In exchange, Deva gave him a bag, claiming it contained 50 lakh and showed the cash to him. “The victim could not check the cash, and therefore it is not clear if the cash was in genuine notes or something else,” said senior inspector Santosh Ghatekar of Park Site police station.

After exchanging the bags, Deva called a taxi and asked Gandhi to keep the bag in the car’s trunk. Gandhi then asked the driver to drop them at Ghatkopar, where his wife was waiting, added Ghatekar.

The taxi driver dropped them off at the Vijay Sales showroom in Ghatkopar. Gandhi paid the taxi fare, and both got off the taxi and before they could open the trunk to get the cash-filled bag, the driver drove and fled towards Bhandup.

The victim then spoke to Deva, he told him not to worry and that he would talk to the driver. The victim waited one day, but when he did not get any response, he approached the Park Site police station and registered a case against Deva and the car driver.

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