App loan fraud: ED recovers documents, seizes Rs 46 cr of Payment Gateways

The ED initiated money laundering investigation on the basis of an FIR filed under various sections of IPC by Cyber Crime Police Station, Kohima, Nagaland.

New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday said that it carried out search operations on September 14 at multiple locations in connection with an investigation related to the app-based token, named HPZ and related entities and seized Rs 46 crore and several documents.

The operation was conducted at six business, residential premises in Delhi, Ghaziabad, Mumbai, Lucknow, Gaya and 16 other premises of Banks, Payment Gateways branches, offices in Delhi, Gurugram, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Jodhpur and Bengaluru.

“Rs 33.36 crore was found with Easebuzz Private Limited, Pune; Rs 8.21 crore with Razorpay Software Private Limited, Bengaluru; Rs 1.28 crore with Cashfree Payments India Private Limited, Bengalurur; and Rs 1.11 crore with Paytm Payments Services Limited, New Delhi,” said the official.

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Total amount of around Rs 46.67 crore was detected and freezed in various bank accounts and virtual accounts.

The ED initiated money laundering investigation on the basis of an FIR filed under various sections of IPC by Cyber Crime Police Station, Kohima, Nagaland.

The HPZ Token was an App-Based Token, which promised users of large gains against investment by investing in mining machines for Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

The modus-operandi of the fraudsters was to first lure the victims to invest in the company on the pretext of doubling their investment through the app HPZ Token. Payments were received from users through UPIs and other various payment gateways/nodal accounts/individuals. Part-amount was paid back to the investors and remaining amount was diverted to various individual and company accounts through various Payment gateways/Banks from where partly it was siphoned off in digital/virtual currencies. After that, the fraudsters stopped the payments and the website became inaccessible.

“Investigation revealed that the HPZ token was operated by Lillion Technocab Private Ltd and Shigoo Technology Private Limited. Shigoo Technology Private Limited was also found linked to various Chinese controlled companies. It was also revealed that various other companies were indulging in receiving funds from the public on the pretext of operating various Apps/Websites for gaming/loan/others,” the official said.

The ED suspected involvement of Jilian Consultants India Pvt Ltd, Gurugram, behind various companies involved in these frauds.

One such entity, Mad-Elephant Network Technology Private Limited in agreement with X10 Financial Services Limited was operating various loan Apps (Yo-Yo cash, Tufan Rupees, Coco cash etc.). Similarly, Su Hui Technology Private Limited, in agreement with Nimisha Finance India Private Limited, had operated Loan Apps.

During the search, various incriminating documents have been recovered and seized.

Huge balances were found to be maintained in the virtual accounts of the involved entities with payment aggregators.

Further probe in the matter is on.

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