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ED arrests man for defrauding US citizens in guise of loans at cheaper rate of interest

New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has arrested a person in a case relating to fake call centers in different parts of India for defrauding foreign nationals (USA citizens) in the guise of loans at a cheaper rate of interest, the agency said on Friday.
Officials from Rajasthan's Jaipur Zonal Office of the agency arrested the accused, Rafiq Khan, in the case. Khan was absconding and was intercepted at Jaipur Airport while he was trying to flee from the country to Sharjah (United Arab Emirates). He was one of the co-conspirators behind the running of the fake call centres.
This was the fourth arrest in the case. Earlier, the ED Jaipur Zonal Office had arrested three accused persons, namely Shahanawaz Ahmed Jeelani, Vipin Kumar Sharma and Viraj Singh Kuntal, in this case, who are presently under judicial custody. The prosecution complaints were already filed by the Directorate on August 24 last year.
ED initiated an investigation under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002, on the basis of First Information Reports (FIRs) registered by Rajasthan Police's Anti-Terrorist Squad and Special Operation Group, Jaipur, under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 and the Information Technology (Amended) Act, 2008.
As per the ED investigation, there was a well-planned conspiracy by the accused persons to defraud foreign nationals by opening virtual call centers and bank accounts in the US that were being operated from Jaipur, Mohali, Mathura and other parts of India.
"The proceeds of crime generated had been routed through various Indian and foreign bank accounts opened in the names of accused persons and shell companies registered by them. The proceeds of crime were ultimately invested in the properties in order to project them as genuine and untainted," said the ED in a statement.

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