The plaintiff works in a pharmaceutical company and lives in the western suburbs. On April 7, he received a phone call from an unknown number. A woman was on the line and introduced herself as an employee of the Delhi passport office. She debited the complainant’s name, date of birth and Aadhaar card number, thereby gaining his trust. She then told him that he had engaged in illegal activities during a trip to Thailand in March and that a complaint had been received against him from the immigration service.
The complainant was surprised because he did not have a passport. The woman then told him that someone could have used his details to have a fake passport made. She then told him to speak to the Delhi crime branch and submit a letter on his innocence. She transferred her call and a man named Sunilkumar Nayak came on the line, posing as a crime branch officer. After hearing the case, Nayak made a video call to the plaintiff and told him that an arrest warrant had been issued in his name. He gave the complainant an internet link that showed human trafficking, money laundering and narcotics cases filed against him.
“Nayak was wearing a uniform when he made the video call. He told the Complainant that he would be arrested and his property seized. The Complainant was then related to a certain Ashutosh Patel who claimed to be a senior officer. Patel demanded Rs 3 lakh as part of a procedure to take action against the person who misused his documents.
The complainant was informed that he would get a refund in two days. He transferred the money according to the instructions and obtained a “police certificate”. But when he later called the same number, he was unable to reach the officer and instead an unknown Gujarat man answered the calls. He then contacted the police on April 14.