Recently, a 32-year-old woman residing in Delhi fell prey to a scam and was allegedly defrauded of Rs. 6 lakhs by an impostor posing as a merchant navy officer from Sweden. Recounting her experience to the police, the woman, a resident of Pratap Nagar, shared that she had been in communication with an individual named Pradeep Kumar Thakur since September 15. Thakur expressed his desire to relocate to India and settle down in Delhi.
“Thakur told me that he had plans to settle down in India permanently with his mother and 5-year-old daughter. He asked me where I worked, and said he would settle in Delhi accordingly. We exchanged numbers and started talking on WhatsApp,” revealed the woman to police officials, as documented by the Times of India.
She further elaborated on how Thakur informed her that he had instructed his agent to book a flight from Lisbon to Delhi. However, later, he conveyed that the agent had booked a flight to Mumbai instead, and he would subsequently take another flight from Mumbai to Delhi.
In an unexpected turn of events, the woman received a WhatsApp call on October 16 from Pradeep, informing her that he was stuck at the Mumbai Customs Department and needed assistance. Subsequently, she received a call from another woman posing as a Customs official in Mumbai, claiming that Pradeep had been detained with a cheque of Rs. 2 crore, exceeding the limit set for an overseas traveler entering India.
Under pressure and believing the elaborate story, the woman was coerced into transferring Rs. 6 lakhs, only to realise later that she had been scammed.
Thus, a police case was registered on November 30 under sections 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) and 34 (common intention) of the IPC.
As of now, there have been no reports of the police apprehending the scammer.