They conned people into believing they had returned from overseas and wanted to exchange the US dollar bills at a cheaper price
The Vasai Crime Branch Unit yesterday arrested two members of a gang who allegedly conned people by selling fake US dollars for Indian currency. It is suspected that multiple cases may be registered against the duo in different police stations The police arrested Mohammed Munir Hussain and Salma Alam at Vasai, while the mastermind, Aamin, is still at large.
Mohammed Hussain and Salma Alam after arrest
According to police, Hussain and Alam's modus operandi was to approach people and tell them that they have come from abroad, and are carrying dollars with them. They would then convince people to exchange dollars at cheaper rates. The dollars were fake.
According to Vasai Crime Branch sources, Aamin met a taxi driver, (the complainant) Sheikh Ashraf Jamil Ahmad (40) last week at Andheri West. He took Rs 500 from Sheikh in exchange of $20 and subsequently told him (Sheikh) that he had around R6 lakh worth US dollars which he could give him for Rs 3 lakh.
Aamin gave Sheikh's mobile number to Hussain who began calling him occasionally. Sheikh got suspicious and informed the local Crime Branch unit.
The police laid a trap, and Sheikh asked Hussain to get the US dollars, as he was ready to buy them. Hussain and Alam landed along with a bundle of US dollars. It was later found that newspapers pages in the size of currency notes were bundled with notes of one or two dollars in the front and at the back, to make it look like a bundle of dollars.
According to an official from the Crime Branch, "We got a complaint from the taxi driver and laid a trap to catch the couple. The mastermind of the gang is still absconding. We will arrest him soon." The couple hail from Nalasopara and eight notes of $20 were recovered from their possession.
"The Manickpur Police station is investigating in the case and both are in their custody. They were booked under various sections of IPC including 420 (cheating), 406 (criminal breach of trust) and 34 acts in furtherance of common intention," he said.