Nigerian Gang dupes people over herbal seeds after friendship on Facebook

  • | Wednesday | 22nd March, 2017

Nigerian scamsters in New Delhi, Greater Noida, Agra, Allahabad have find new ways to increase business by channelising foreign funds and luring people into investing in a `herbal seed business`. In Agra they have duped a lady professor, in Allahabad a Air Force officer has been cheated. This Nigierian scammers gang is very active in Greater Noida and Delhi.

Beware of Nigerian! The Nigerian scamsters in India have given a new shape to their business module. They are duping people on pretext of partnering with MNCs, investing in herbal seed business and channelising foreign funds. According to Dr Triveni Singh, SP,  STF UP Police, there is a complete shift in the modus operandi of these Nigerian gangs.

UP Police STF has arrested a nigerian in Kolhapur for a major drug scam worth crores. STF has found that they have duped Rs 50 Lakh from a lady professor in Agra. "The scamsters lure gullible targets via social networking sites such as Facebook. They then pose as diplomats or MNC executives and entice their targets to invest in global venture, which actually does not exist. Interestingly, all dealings are done at high-secured areas such as airport and five-star hotels to give an impression of being high-flyers and avoid the risk of getting into trouble," said DrTriveni Singh, SP, STF UP Police.

"Depending upon the profile of the target person, the gang traps them. In the herbal seeds scam, the victim is approached online as a representative of an overseas pharmaceutical company looking to source herbal seeds from local farmers or market through an agent. They promise the victim huge returns if they pay the agent upfront for the seeds. Then they disappear with the money," said Uttar Pradesh Special Task Force`s Superintendent of police Dr Triveni Singh.

One of the latest victims is Meerut`s Varun Thapar, who lost `3 lakh to a Nigerian gang. Thapar went to meet the gang members at a fivestar hotel in Mumbai and Delhi. An Air Force officer has also lost Rs 20 Lakh in Allahabad. ``The gang members contact through their international number or makes WhatsApp call. The gang sounds so professional that it is difficult to make out that they are fraud. I was trapped after getting a friend request from a Manchester-based female executive. I was given seed sample in Mumbai and later duped at a five-star hotel in Delhi. The trap was so perfect that I could not sense any foul play," Dr Triveni Singh told NYOOOZ.

During investigation, STF found that all the numbers used for communication were taken on fake identities. UP Police STF says that the gangs have developed a new trick, where they pose as diplomat or MNC executive and work in nexus with local youth who help them with logistics.

In a similar way, one Agra based doctor ended up losing `50 lakh falling in trap of another Nigerian gang. She was approached by diamond trader from Los Angeles who wanted to invest in India. Lady doctor was in touch for long, when one day he told her that he was coming with huge foreign currency and was stopped by Customs officer, who was demanding money for his release. Once she paid the initial `1.5 lakh, he started making new excuses and demanded more money," she said asking anonymity.

The victim said each time the gang member would make a new excuse. "When he realised that he can siphon more money from me, he gave me a bag containing sealed foreign currency. But he cooked up a bizarre story that only after applying a chemical solution, I can use this money. Later, I found that the money was fake," she said.

According to Uttar Pradesh Special Task Force`s Superintendent of police Dr Triveni Singh, with this new trend adopted by criminals, more and more educated people are falling into their trap.

"There has been an increase in such Nigerian frauds, primarily because of people`s desire for easy money. It is sad to see educated people falling prey to such fraud. This is despite our awareness campaign about such scams," Singh said. He explained that gangs are using virtual number generator through which they can generate any number to their phone so the reviver will have an impression that he is getting a call from foreign country.

The gang prefers to communicate through WhatsApp calls to avoid coming in police net. "We have received several complaints across India about Nigerian scams and are tracking couple of gangs," Singh said.

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