ED arrests agent in Rs 600-crore ponzi scam
Chandigarh/New Delhi, July 29 (IANS) -The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has arrested an agent of a Chandigarh-based firm Uni Pay Group, which siphoned off Rs 600 crore from thousands of investors through its ponzi schemes, an official said on Saturday.
The agency arrested Kamal K. Bakshi on Friday during its raids at five places in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh’s Ghazipur and Haryana’s Gurugram, Faridabad and Ambala.
Bakshi, who had been absconding and was declared a proclaimed offender, was produced before a special court on Saturday that sent him to 14-day judicial custody in an ongoing Prevention of Money Laundering Act case being investigated by the ED against Unipay 2U Marketing Pvt Ltd and Unigateway2U Trading Pvt Ltd.
“During its probe, we zeroed in on two of the active agents of Uni Pay Group, Bakshi and Arvind Kumar Singh, and accordingly conducted searches at five different places on Friday. Searches resulted in recovery of some immovable properties, jewellery, high-end cars estimated to be valued at Rs 4.18 crore, which have been seized,” an ED statement said.
An ED official said that thousands of unsuspecting investors were systematically lured and cheated of Rs 600 crore by floating a ponzi or pyramid scheme assuring exorbitant returns.
According to the official, the initial investors were paid the exorbitant returns to win over the confidence of a greater number of people.
“When thousands of people across the country invested crores of rupees in the ponzi schemes, the companies stopped monthly returns since October 2010 and gradually siphoned off crores of rupees of investors.
“The mastermind of the scheme is one Malaysian national Mugundhan Gangam, who floated Unipay 2U Marketing Pvt Ltd and Unigateway2U Trading Pvt Ltd in India. After executing his operation, Gangam fled India and is suspected to be in Malaysia,” the ED official said.
The company manipulated by using a web of bank accounts and layering of money through a plethora of bank accounts, he added.