An extortion gang allegedly tricked a 54-year-old man from Mumbai out of Rs 1.23 lakh into luring him into performing a lewd act during a video call with a woman and later blackmailing him using the visuals. One of the cyber crooks allegedly posed as a senior Punjab police officer and threatened him saying that a case had been registered against him.
A First Information Report (FIR) was filed by Gamdevi Police Station on 16 May. The complainant told police that he received a friend request on Facebook on May 8 from a woman named Komal Sharma. He accepted the request and the two began chatting on Facebook, he told police. The woman then asked for her mobile number which he shared with her and the two then started chatting on WhatsApp, he said.
At around 11 p.m., she made a video call on WhatsApp, as per the complaint. The woman on the phone engaged in a sexual act and instigated the complainant to do something similar. After about five minutes, she cut off the video call and texted him saying that she had recorded her video and asked him to send Rs 31,700 or else she would upload it to YouTube and other platforms. social media, the man told police.
The complainant said he initially refused to send the money, but on May 13 he received a WhatsApp message, allegedly from a police officer named Rakesh Agarwal, saying that a complaint against him over an obscene YouTube video had been received. The complainant checked online and found that there was a senior police officer by the name of Rakesh Agarwal in Punjab.
He got scared and called the number again and a cyber crook posing as the policeman told him to contact another number, allegedly for a YouTube official, to remove the video, as per the complaint.
The complainant said he called this number and was charged by a fraudster around Rs 80,000 to remove the video. He was told that an FIR had been filed against him and to cancel that he was asked to call another number, he said. When he called this number, he was asked to pay Rs 1 lakh and he ended up paying Rs 50,000, according to the complaint. When the fraudsters kept asking for more money, the complainant realized he had been duped and went to the police.