Home CATEGORIES Business Ethics & Philanthropy Central Crime Branch arrests five in fake CSR funds scam in Bengaluru

Central Crime Branch arrests five in fake CSR funds scam in Bengaluru

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The Central Crime Branch (CCB) has busted a fake CSR funds racket operating in Bengaluru and arrested five people involved in the scam. The CCB has also seized cash worth Rs 23.4 lakh from the accused and counterfeit currency with a face value of Rs 30.9 crore. The arrested are Kishor, Chandrashekar and Rishi, residents of Agrahara Dasarahalli, Sudhir a resident of Basavanagudi and Vinay hailing from Vijayanagar.

How did the gang operate

While one of the accused Kishor used to look for potential targets for cheating, Sudhir and Chandrashekar would pose as corporate representatives and approach these people luring them with CSR fund donation offers from top companies. Their potential targets included NGOs, charitable trusts and businesses, who were offered CSR funds by the scamsters using names of top corporate houses and in return they demanded a commission of 40%.
If any NGO or trust showed interest in receiving CSR funds, then Rishi and Vinay would show fake currency packed in boxes to these potential targets via video calls. This was done to convince the target that the gang is in possession of CSR funds which certain top companies are eager to donate. If the target was convinced and transferred the 40% commission in the bank account of the accused, the latter would successfully abscond.
“This is a new way of cheating, which was not seen before though we had vague information about this. This network of fraudsters approached the trusts. They would apprise them that if they provide them cash then they will get more money through Corporate Social Responsibility,” Bengaluru Police Commissioner B Dayananda told reporters.

How did they get caught

Several NGOs and trusts operating in an around Bengaluru fell prey to this gang which was caught after recently approaching a businessman offering him CSR funds worth Rs 1 crore and demanded a commission of Rs 25 lakh. However, the potential target got suspicious after seeing boxes neatly packed with fake currency and informed the police. CCB’s Women Protection Wing laid a trap and arrested them, as per the police.
“We have arrested five people. One was arrested earlier in a gambling case in Wilson Garden in the city. Another accused was arrested earlier in Mumbai in a similar case. These accused were involved in money laundering activities,” the Police Commissioner told the media.
The police are suspecting that the fake currency was perhaps being printed in Mumbai. Kishore, who was the gang’s linchpin, who had earlier suffered huge losses in his hotel business, has been summoned by Mumbai Police.

Bengaluru again

In December last year, police had arrested a 38-year-old man for conning over 18 NGOs in the city by promising to get them laptops for subsidised prices through CSR funds. The accused Prathap Simha is a class 10 droput who resided in Girinagar in Southern Bengaluru. As per police, the man was a habitual offender and the police were trying to nab him for the past few years.