Mumbai: The Malabar Hill police have arrested three persons from Gujarat and Rajasthan for allegedly extorting money from a 37-year-old man after trapping him in a sextortion trap. The accused had allegedly video-called the victim when he was bathing and later demanding extortion from him, failing which he threatened to share the videos with his friends. Even after paying the sum as demanded, the fraudsters shared his video among their friends. The police have arrested the accused for cheating and defamation along with relevant sections of the IT act.
According to police, the incident was reported in June this year, when the complainant, a 37-year-old businessman from Malabar Hill claimed that he had received a video call from an Instagram ID, of him taking a bath in a nude state, wherein the person demanded ₹37,000. Despite paying the extortion, when the complainant's video was sent to his friends, they informed him. Eventually, he approached the police and lodged a complaint.
During investigations, police probed the money trail and learnt that the money was sent to three people via an online payment platform from Gujarat and Rajasthan, who were in touch with a Nigerian con gang, who had diverted the extortion money to buy cryptocurrency. Further probe revealed that the two accounts where money was paid belonged to an Ahmedabad resident Sawailal Darji and a Rajasthan resident Babulal Darji.
The questioning of the duo revealed the role of their accomplice-- Darshan Bhati from Gandhi Nagar. Police have recovered two laptops, three mobile phones, 25 debit/credit cards and 4 SIM cards from them. The trio has booked under the IPC sections of extortion, defamation, threatening act and Information Technology act.
A detailed probe later revealed that the trio had exchanged the extortion money with a Nigerian national through mobile app Paxful which deals into cryptocurrency. Police are also ascertaining if any more victims were defrauded using the same modus operandi and further probe is underway.