Chinese Citizen Defrauds 300 Crore Taka via Mobile App

Chinese Citizen Defrauds 300 Crore Taka via Mobile App

Abu Talha, a postgraduate student of Dhaka College, used to pay for his education by tutoring students. In October last year, a link came to his WhatsApp number. He entered that link and saw an advertisement. The flashy ad said, ‘Download an app called “Bargata” and invest 10,000 taka and earn 800 to 5,000 taka daily.’ After seeing the advertisement, Talha invested one lakh taka step by step. Three months later, the app-based organization disappeared with the money.

Abu Talha became a plaintiff in this incident and filed a case in the capital’s Chawkbazar police station in January this year. Investigating the case, the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the police identified 12 people, including a Chinese national. 9 of them were arrested. However, the leader of the gang, Chinese citizen Kevin Chen (40), escaped.

Sources involved in the investigation say that at the beginning of the investigation, information about a ‘merchant’ account of a Financial Services Institution (MSF) was found on the mobile phone. Analyzing the transaction data of that account, it can be seen that 25 crores of rupees have been transacted in the account in just 14 days. Based on this unusual transaction, CID investigation officers came to know that the account was opened using the name and national identity card of a person named AB Siddiqui. However, AB Siddiqui, a resident of Munshiganj, died a month before opening the account.

According to CID sources, Kevin, a Chinese national, had opened a ‘merchant’ account in the name of the deceased and was using it. He had been deceiving people for almost three years by making new apps and trapping them in loans and investments. A few Bangladeshi citizens assisted him in this work. From July to December of last year, Kevin and his associates stole about 300 crore rupees from a total of 991 people by creating two apps named ‘TNS’ and ‘Bargata’. In the name of the software business, Kevin was cheating by opening various app-based companies. The circle withdrew 300 crore rupees in six months

According to CID sources, Kevin Chen came to Bangladesh three years ago. He opened a company called ‘Pieces Technology’ and started cheating people by creating various apps. He used to open new apps and run them for six to eight years. After embezzling a large amount of money, he would close the respective app. He would launch new apps again. In this way, Kevin smuggled crores of rupees from Bangladesh. There is another case against him in Dhanmondi police station.

Abu Talha, a post-graduate student of Dhaka College, a victim of Kevin’s fraud, alleged in the statement of the case that a link was received on his WhatsApp number in October last year. Visit that link and see an ad. After seeing the advertisement, he downloaded two apps on his mobile phone and earned 400 taka without doing any work in the first four days. A few days later he was added to a WhatsApp group. Later in another message he was told, ‘Download another app called Bargata and earn 800 to 5 thousand a day by investing only 10 thousand taka.’

Abu Talha told Prothom Alo yesterday, ‘I invested 10,000 taka through the app from the money saved by tuition. Later, it was stipulated that to invest, one should always deposit 10 thousand rupees in the app. Later, I invested another two thousand rupees. App operators invest Rs 1,500 initially from Rs 2,000. I continue to get two and a half hundred rupees a day.’

In the beginning, Abu Talha mentioned that he got a profit of some taka for a few days, then he invested one lakh taka step by step. Of this, 20,000 rupees were borrowed from friends. The app was shut down around December last year. After three days, another message came from the WhatsApp number saying that the company was having problems with the investment. It is said that those who can invest 20,000 rupees by today will get their previous money back. assured and invested again. Later, the members of the cheating gang stopped all communication.

According to the CID, some digital devices and MSF account numbers were seized after the arrest of nine people. It can be seen that Kevin fled to China after opening two new apps in these six months from July to December last year and withdrew about 3 billion rupees from a total of 991 people. Some invested up to seven lakh rupees in the two apps.

How the account is opened in the name of the deceased

According to CID sources, AB Siddiqui was working as a managing director (MD) for a Chinese company. Before his death, he served as the MD of Kevin Chen’s app-based companies, ‘TNS’ and ‘Bargata, for some time. On that occasion, Kevin had various personal information and documents of AB Siddiqui, including his national identity card. A month after AB Siddiqui’s death, Kevin opened a ‘merchant’ account with a mobile financial services organization, or MSF in his name. An official of the MSF organization assisted him in this work with illegal benefits. The CID has arrested SM Abu Sayem, an official of the MSF company, as an accomplice of Kevin.

Officials involved in the investigation say that MSF has taken action against Sayem, who was arrested for his involvement in a fraud ring. His family members did not know that the account was in the name of AB Siddiqui. At the beginning of the investigation, his son and daughter were also taken into custody and questioned by the investigating officers. They were released without being related.

This reporter talked to AB Siddiqui’s daughter Fatema Akhter about the matter. He told Prothom Alo last Friday that his father died a year ago. However, he refused to talk about how the account was opened in his deceased father’s name.

The case is being investigated by CID’s CyberPolice Centre. Special Superintendent of Police of CyberPolice Center Rezaul Karim Masud told Prothom Alo that the account was opened without complying with the conditions for opening a merchant account of MSF. Vigilance should be increased in opening MSF accounts to stop such fraud.

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