Phone call intercepts of bookies feature code names ‘master’ and ‘doctor saheb’

Investigators in the IPL spot-fixing case would now seek to establish the identities of two code names “Master” and “Doctor Saheb” — two names which repeatedly feature in the intercepted telephonic conversations made by bookies — through the interrogation of Ramesh Vyas.

“Our investigations so far have revealed that both these names pertain to two members of the syndicate who are based outside the country and it is possible that both are members of the underworld since Vyas was directly in touch with them. We would try to corroborate the same by interrogating him,” said a senior police officer.

Vyas, an alleged bookie himself, is accused of having direct links with underworld don Dawood Ibrahim’s key aide Chhota Shakeel, and along with Tinku Mandi is believed to be one of the two main connecting links to bookies based in India.

He was arrested by the Mumbai Police last month and was brought to Delhi on Saturday when a local court granted his custody to the Delhi Police for 10 days.

Informed sources said the Delhi Police could move the court, seeking custody of several bookies arrested earlier and who are currently in judicial custody. This, a source said, was to confront them with Ramesh Vyas, the 27th person to be arrested in the case.

The invoking of the stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act on the accused is likely to give more teeth to the investigators in the form of longer custodies.

Among the seizures made by the Mumbai Police following the arrests of three bookies were 92 mobile phones and 18 SIM cards.

Different phone sets

It is learnt that Vyas used different phone sets to communicate with the bookies based in South India and the members of the underworld based in Dubai and Karachi.

Investigations and recoveries such as recording machines at Tinku Mandi’s instance have revealed that he recorded the phone calls he made or received to other bookies.

However, those recorded conversations have not given any additional information beyond what the police had gathered by intercepting phone calls.

Seeks ED probe

Noting that unearthing the money trail in the case was important to gather further evidence against the accused, the Delhi Police have written to the Enforcement Directorate for a probe into alleged hawala channels.

“The money trail is important as the accused derived pecuniary benefits from the dealings at various levels. Since it is a case of money laundering, which is an area of expertise for the agency, we sought their assistance. We have provided them the details of those arrested,” said the officer.