A 27-year-old vegetable vendor, Rishabh Sharma, was arrested after he earned Rs 21 crore by scamming others with fake work-from-home jobs. According to the police, he was directly involved in 37 cases of fraud that were registered in 10 Indian states. Not just this but he also played a role in 855 other cases. Uttarakhand police officer Ankush Mishra said, ”A few years ago, he would sell vegetables and fruits in Faridabad. Like most other businessmen, he incurred massive losses during the pandemic and had to wind up. For the next few months, he took up various WFH offers to sustain his family.”
He further added, “He then met an old friend who was already involved in orchestrating online frauds. In just six months, since he started committing frauds, he netted Rs 21 crore.”
The latest victim was a Dehradun-based businessman who was duped of Rs. 20 lakh.
As of now, the man has been arrested. The arrest was made on October 28.
As a part of the fraud, Rishabh created a fake website of “Marriot Bonvoy”-marriotwork.com. It looked very similar to the original website of the hotel chain, marriot.com. Then, the businessman got a Whatsapp message on August 4. It was about a work from home opportunity about a part time job to write reviews for the “Marriot Bonvoy” group of hotels.
Explaining what had happened, the man in his complaint said, “Since the offer seemed genuine, I called on the number provided with the message. A man identified himself as Rishabh Sharma, a representative of Marriott Bonvoy. He introduced me to his colleague Sonia, who, he said, was an associate of one of the hotels of the group.”
Initially, the man received a payment of Rs 10,000. However, later he was credited with the same amount for a second time in his ICICI bank account. However, soon, the investment started to surge exponentially.
“Every time I would ask for returns, they would persuade me to invest more, saying the profits could run into a crore. After a while, they stopped responding to my calls and messages and switched off the numbers. I had already invested Rs 20 lakh by then,” the businessman said.
This is how the businessman was duped. The police have claimed that the scammers would randomly speak to others and send them messages, luring them to invest more and more money.