Crime
The police conducted a raid and took 54 tele-callers into custody, besides six team leaders and two main accused.

The Hyderabad police on Monday raided two call centres that were allegedly offering illegal loans in Punjagutta and Banjara Hills and took 62 people into custody. Authorities said that the accused contacted people under the guise of providing loans at low interest and collected their debit card details from them, to fraudulently transfer amounts from their bank accounts and cheat them.

The raid on Elite Connect Care Pvt Ltd was carried out by the cybercrime wing of the Central Crime Station (CCS), who took 54 tele-callers into custody, besides six team leaders and two main accused.

The police said that the case came to light based on a complaint received from a victim who was duped of Rs 32,000 from his bank account.

Detailing their modus operandi, the police said, “The accused would contact people randomly. They would contact a person by informing them that they are calling from Mahindra Finance and say that they would provide personal loans up to Rs 10 lakh at a low interest rate of 6.5% per annum. The interested customers were asked to send their Aadhar card and PAN Card copies for sanctioning loan.”

The accused would also ask the victims to deposit “two months EMI amount in their bank accounts as security deposit,” the police said.

“In the guise of transferring two months EMI amount from the savings account to loan ledger for a 24-hours period only, they collected the debit card number, CVV number, expiry date including OTP number from the customer,” the investigation officials added.

The police said that in this manner, the accused collected the debit card details and OTP numbers from about 600 customers and cheated them to a tune of about Rs 25 crore mainly in Telangana, but also in other states.

“It is possible that this figure could be many times more. Some other accused are at large and efforts are being made to apprehend them,” the police said.

A net cash of Rs 80,000, two laptops, a router, 34 wireless telephones, 42 mobile phones, 21 SIM cards, 60 long note books and a frozen bank account of the accused containing Rs 6 lakh has been seized by the police.