Mumbai

Cryptocurrency racket: key accused surrenders

Sachin Shelar, chief accountant of Flintstone Group, had been hiding in Dubai for the past few weeks

A key accused in the multi-crore cryptocurrency racket, busted by the Thane police earlier this year, surrendered before the Thane Crime Branch on Tuesday.

The racket was busted on June 4 when Unit I of the Thane Crime Branch raided the offices of the Flintstone Group in Thane and Vikhroli. The company is alleged to have cheated hundreds of investors by at least ₹500 crore by promising them high returns on their investment in cryptocurrency.

The police said the accused, Sachin Shelar, was the chief accountant of the Flintstone Group, and hence a prime accused in the case.

An officer with the Thane Crime Branch said, “Mr. Shelar has been hiding in Dubai for the past few weeks and surrendered on Tuesday morning. We are interrogating him to find out more about the specifics of the racket as well as the location of the other accused. Investigations indicate that Amit Lakhanpal, the kingpin, is also holed up in Dubai.”

Flintstone Group claimed to have created a new form of cryptocurrency called Money Trade Coin, and told their investors it would become legal tender in some years in certain countries. They also created fake cryptocurrency accounts and kept transferring the bogus cryptocurrency into their clients’ accounts in order to fool them.

The officer said, “Mr. Shelar was in a position to handle the finances of the company. We are interrogating him to find out the money trail, so that at least some of the money that was fraudulently acquired from investors can be recovered.”

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Printable version | Mar 30, 2020 4:20:42 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/cryptocurrency-racket-key-accused-surrenders/article24204374.ece

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