In a significant development, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has initiated legal proceedings against Kunal Gupta, the alleged mastermind behind a fake call center scam in Kolkata, along with eight others. Gupta, director of Met Technologies Pvt Ltd, was apprehended by the ED on September 10, marking a crucial step in unraveling the intricate web of deception orchestrated by the accused.
Unveiling the Money Laundering Operation
ED officials filed a prosecution complaint on 08/11/2023, under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002, against Gupta and his associates. The complaint, targeting a total sum of Rs 67.33 crore, outlines the extensive money laundering activities carried out by the accused. The assets seized by the ED, allegedly belonging to Gupta, his family, and associated companies, further emphasize the scale of the illicit operation.
The Elaborate Modus Operandi
Investigations revealed that Met Technologies Pvt Ltd engaged in duping unsuspecting residents in the US, UK, and Australia. Operating under the guise of legitimate businesses, the accused deceived individuals through fraudulent tech support schemes, misleading website sales, and fictitious loan offers via counterfeit mobile apps. The victims were coerced into making substantial payments, resulting in the generation of proceeds of crime amounting to Rs 145 crore.
Kunal Gupta’s Alleged Dual Role
Gupta, besides orchestrating the fake call center racket, is also accused of involvement in illegal betting and online gambling activities. The ED asserts that Gupta established companies in the UK, the US, and Australia to facilitate these unlawful operations. The prosecution complaint not only seeks punishment for the money laundering offense but also advocates for the confiscation of the ill-gotten gains accumulated by Gupta and his accomplices.
Legal Proceedings Gain Traction
The Kolkata Sessions Court acknowledged the gravity of the prosecution complaint, taking cognizance on 16/11/2023. This marks a pivotal step in bringing the accused to justice and underscores the commitment of law enforcement agencies to combat complex financial crimes. The legal action aims to hold Gupta and the eight other accused accountable for their involvement in the call centre scam and the subsequent money laundering activities.
International Impact of the Scam
The ED’s findings highlight the global ramifications of the call centre scam, with victims spread across the US, UK, and Australia. The fraudulent activities, ranging from tech support scams to deceptive website sales, not only harmed individuals but also tarnished the reputation of legitimate businesses targeted by the accused. The legal proceedings initiated by the ED aim to send a strong message against such transnational financial crimes, emphasizing the consequences for those involved in perpetrating such schemes.
As the legal battle unfolds, the case against Kunal Gupta and the eight accused presents a landmark opportunity to demonstrate the resolve of law enforcement agencies in combating cross-border financial crimes. The ED’s meticulous investigation and the subsequent legal actions underscore the importance of international cooperation in dismantling sophisticated criminal networks and safeguarding the interests of individuals and businesses worldwide.
Thanks & Regards – Seema Kanojiya