India Cops Arrest Nigerian Involved In Mango Seed Fraud –
HYDERABAD: A Hyderabadi couple helped the Ranchi police nab a Nigerian, who duped people across the country, including some businessmen to the tune of over Rs 150 crore in the name of purchasing obesity-reducing mango seeds, at the RGI Airport on Tuesday.
Police arrested John Emma alias Gurr Paul from Nigeria. Emma, who landed at the RGI Airport in Hyderabad from Mumbai on Monday night to meet a prospective victim, was nabbed by the special team of Ranchi police.
According sources, Emma, who poses as Gurr Paul, purchasing manager of Dynamic Pharmaceutical Limited, UK, had lured several victims across the country by offering to purchase African bush mango, ‘Irvingia gebonisis’, seeds at a mind-boggling price.
Police said Emma or his associates target potential victims on Facebook by chatting with them as a representative of Dynamic Pharmaceutical Ltd. If the victim is a male, the fraudsters chat as a female and vice versa. Two months ago, a government employee, Ramu from LB Nagar, and his wife, SP Mamata, an advocate practicing cyber law, came in contact with one Elizabeth Perry of Dynamic Pharmaceuticals on Facebook. Perry told them that her company procures 400 grams of Irvingia gabonensis (bush mango seeds) from India for $5,000. She also informed Ramu and Mamata that the seeds were available for sale in India at $2,000 per 400 grams.
When the couple showed interest, Perry put them on to Gurr Paul, purchasing manager of the firm. Paul told the advocate and her husband that they have to purchase seeds from one Nidhi Sharma in Mumbai for $2,000 per 400 grams packets and his firm is then ready to purchase 100 packets of seeds at a price of $5,000 per packet. On the request of the advocate, Paul even sent an email with purchase offer from the pharma company.
But, by checking the IP address from which the email was sent, the advocate found out that the email came from Mumbai and not from the UK, as claimed by Paul. The couple then checked on the internet about the sale of particular seeds and realized that some people were duped by a seed purchasing gang to the tune of several lakhs. Mamata and Ramu then contacted some of the victims in Ranchi, Mumbai and Bangalore with the help of police and the victims encouraged Mamata and Ramu to remain in contact with the accused so that they could be arrested.
The duped victims also pooled in over Rs one lakh and gave it to the couple to purchase the seeds from Nidhi Sharma in Mumbai so that the man posing as Gurr Paul could be nabbed. On August 29, the couple met Nidhi Sharma at Inorbit Mall in Mumbai and purchased a packet of seeds by paying Rs 1.5 lakh. After the purchase, Gurr Paul contacted them and said that he needs more than 100 packets quickly.
The advocate then asked Paul to come to India so that he could verify the quality of seeds before they purchase in bulk from Nidhi. Accordingly, Gurr Paul agreed to meet the couple in Hyderabad on Monday and they in turn alerted the Ranchi police, where a case was booked against Gurr Paul for duping businessman Ajay Singh for Rs 84 lakh a few months ago.
When Gurr Paul alias John Emma came to the RGI Airport on Monday night from Mumbai, he was nabbed by the Ranchi police, who claim that the gang had duped people across the country of over Rs 150 crore. Police sources said that Emma came from Mumbai. The Ranchi police would produce him before a local court on Wednesday and at present he was being held at the RGI Airport police station.
The gang had also duped a Bangalore-based businessman, Lalith Singhvi, of Rs 48 lakh recently. Based on the alert from Ranchi police, their Mumbai counterparts have launched a manhunt to nab Nidhi Sharma.