Police arrest gang running bogus shipping companies; 188 gold jewelry sovereigns, other valuables seized

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Chenai: Greater Chennai Police nabbed a gang running fictitious transport companies. According to the police, the company defrauded several million rupees. Police identified those arrested as Ponraj, David alias Kevinraj, Gokulnath alias Daniel from Thoothukudi and Patrickmari Vijaymurugappa from Pondicherry and launched a search to catch 12 others.
Police said the fraudsters were posing as an exporter/shipping agent of GPR Resources Pvt. ltd. and engaged freight forwarding companies such as ISSGF, VPC Freight Forwarders and Rushabh Sealink to lease barges or containers from front companies they appointed for the export of building materials from Thoothukudi to the Maldives or Jeddah . Fraudsters operated in Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai and Thoothukudi, The Hindu reported.

Police Commissioner Shankar Jiwal said that in reality no export had taken place. Also, the exporting companies, shippers and container suppliers were fake. “All cargo related documents such as shipping bills, invoices and bills of lading were fake and no cargo was moved as planned. No export had taken place,” Jiwal said.

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Fraudsters registered about 40 companies with the Registrar of Companies and presented these companies as shippers and carriers to attract business from freight forwarding logistics companies, The Hindu more detailed report.

According to the investigative agency, the fraudsters had opened 61 bank accounts in the name of shell companies, obtained SIM cards, 81 digital signature certificates, obtained payments and defaults, made imports and exports only on paper and deceived real businesses.

The police further stated that she had a huge turnover and paid GST without actual export in order to get loans from banks. Meanwhile, only three companies had filed complaints against the fraudsters for cheating them out of ₹15.52 crore. Two luxury cars, ₹58 lakh, 188 gold jewelry sovereigns and other valuables were seized.

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