Senior Inspector George Fernandes of Malad police said, “The EOW has registered a case. While we have mentioned the FIR in our station house dairy, the investigation is being carried out by EOW.” (Representational Image)
The Economic Offence Wing (EOW) of the Mumbai Police Crime Branch on Monday booked three owners of a finance company for allegedly duping depositors under the pretext of offering heavy returns. The police fear that more than 500 people may have been duped of around Rs 400 crore by the company based in Malad.
The case was registered after a 50-year-old real estate agent, Sunil Nagpal, filed a complaint with the EOW last December, alleging that he had been duped of Rs 45 lakh. Following this, four others have stepped forward with similar complaints against the same company, the police said.
In his statement to the police, Nagpal said, “I received an information that a finance company was accepting deposits and offering multiple investment schemes. So, I went to the company’s (Ramagenia Leasing and Finance Private Limited) office in Malad.” There, Nagpal met the company director, who claimed that the firm dealt with mortgage and lending business. Since the company needed finances to distribute loans, it is accepting deposits with the minimum amount being Rs 1 lakh.
Nagpal told the police that the money received from the depositors was distributed among the creditors in the form of a loan. Based on the loan they received, the creditors would then repay the depositors in the form of interest. “One of the directors gave Nagpal details of the schemes being offered. He decided to invest in one,” said an officer.
From September 2012 till December 2012, Nagpal invested Rs 4 lakh in a scheme. “I was assured an interest of 1.25 per cent per month and kept receiving the money every month,” Nagpal told the police. He went on to receive the assured interest on his investment and even got the maturity amount. Nagpal then invested Rs 40 lakh in a fixed deposit investment scheme from 2013 to 2017.
Till November 2017, Nagpal regularly received monthly interest on his investment. But from December 2017, the interest amount stopped being credited. When asked, one of the directors told Nagpal that the company was facing financial problems and that firm had some real estate properties and hotels that they are planning to sell to refund depositors. “Later, during my visits to their office, I realised that many people have also been duped like me,” Nagpal told the police.
In order to assure the investors, the company officials held three meetings with them in November 2019 and promised to repay the money. But they refused to provide an exact date. Following this, Nagpal approached the EOW. With the company based in Malad, the EOW got an FIR registered at Malad police station.
Senior Inspector George Fernandes of Malad police said, “The EOW has registered a case. While we have mentioned the FIR in our station house dairy, the investigation is being carried out by EOW.”