Guwahati, Friday, October 13, 2017
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Prime accused, aide nabbed
RITURAJ BORTHAKUR
 GUWAHATI, Oct 12 - In a major breakthrough in the infamous call centre racket busted here in August, City Police arrested the kingpin and his associate from near their residences at Ahmedabad in Gujarat.The operation was carried out yesterday with the help of Gujarat Police.

City Police had received information that the main accused, Rajesh Ravibhai Mukherjee alias Rajesh Khan, and his associate Hardik Mewada, who is also wanted in the case, were spotted near their respective residences at Ahmedabad on October 9.

Immediately a team of City Police led by investigating officer of the case ACP (Basistha) Moushumi Kalita moved to Ahmedabad and apprehended both the persons with the help of Gujarat Police.

“After following all the formalities, the two accused persons were brought to Assam today. They will be produced before the court tomorrow and further investigation will continue,” a senior police official told The Assam Tribune.

It was Rajesh who had set up the call centres in the city through which US citizens were conned by tele-callers who impersonated as Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Immigration and other federal officials.

Three such call centres were busted in the city. With the duo, the total number of arrests in the case has gone up to eleven.

Sources said that Rajesh is closely linked to Sagar Thakkar, the alleged mastermind of the Internal Revenue Service call centre scam, in which thousands of Americans were defrauded to the tune of $300 million. They had been operating the extortion racket since 2013. They had targeted at least 15,000 US-based taxpayers who were allegedly duped by the tele-callers who impersonated as Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Immigration and other federal officials and demanded payments for non-existent debts.

After the City Police busted the call centres, a similar racket was busted in Shillong as well.

Shillong Police had arrested another key accused who allegedly recruited the tele-callers for the NE call centres, most of whom are from north-eastern states. City Police is likely to visit Shillong soon to seek the custody of a few arrested in the neighbouring state.

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