Rs 854 Crore Scam Via 84 Bank Accounts Executed From 1-BHK Flat In Bengaluru: Check This Shocking Scam Across India, Dubai


Rohit Kulkarni

Rohit Kulkarni

Oct 20, 2023


In Yelahanka, a suburb of Bengaluru, a 33-year-old MBA graduate and a 36-year-old software engineer initiated an anonymous private enterprise two years ago, operating out of a single-bedroom house. They employed two individuals to maintain eight mobile phones round the clock. In September this year, the Bengaluru cyber crime police arrested the MBA graduate, Manoj Sreenivas, the software engineer, Phanindra K, and four others.

Rs 854 Crore Scam Via 84 Bank Accounts Executed From 1-BHK Flat In Bengaluru: Check This Shocking Scam Across India, Dubai

Massive Rs 854 Crore Cyber Fraud Network Unveiled: The Dubai Connection

The case came to light due to a complaint filed by a 26-year-old woman who was duped out of Rs 8.5 lakh. She was enticed through an app and later a WhatsApp group, where she was encouraged to make small investments for high returns. This led the police to the house in Yelahanka. Subsequent investigations uncovered that this residence served as the operational base for a massive fraud network, deceiving thousands of people across India who invested small sums for promised high returns.

The cyber-crime police revealed that Rs 854 crore flowed through 84 bank accounts over two years, but by September, only Rs 5 crore remained as they froze the accounts. These accounts were linked to 5,013 cases of cybercrime across India, with a significant number in Bengaluru. The money was funnelled into gaming apps, cryptocurrencies like USDT, online casinos, and payment gateways to be cashed out by the masterminds suspected to be based in Dubai, whom the local operators never met in person.

The police are investigating possible connections between the Dubai-based operators and Chinese operatives. This case mirrors a similar one in Hyderabad where local operatives were connected to Dubai-based operators with Chinese ties, revealing a potential terror funding link.

Cyber Criminals’ Sophisticated Scheme: Laundering and Luring Through Digital Shadows

The local operators received commissions for each transaction they facilitated, and they opened bank accounts without proper KYC verification. They used an app to send cloned bank OTPs to the Dubai operators, making it appear as if the fake accounts were managed locally. The mobile phones were likely used to transfer funds between fake and mule accounts and siphon money through gaming apps, online casinos, and cryptocurrencies.

The laundered money was channelled through international banks and invested in foreign companies. Local operatives spent the proceeds on software, a casino, a resort, and a garment factory.

The fraud scheme typically lured victims through WhatsApp and Telegram, promising high daily profits on small investments. Investigations are ongoing to identify the key operatives behind this extensive network. While some suspects were granted bail, there are still 16 other cases against them, and investigations continue.


Rohit Kulkarni
Rohit Kulkarni
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