Ponzi scheme: Family tried to win cops over with bait of ex-DGP's name
Kartick Shrivastav and wife Priti
The Shrivastavs knew how to lay the bait. The family from Mumbai, which allegedly conned at least 22 persons of R35 crore and is suspected to have duped over 250 police personnel through its get-rich-quick Ponzi scheme, spun a web of lies to win potential investors’ trust.
As per the complaint registered by the 22 persons, including doctors and police personnel, with the economic offences wing (EOW) of the Mumbai Police, Mohan Prasad Shrivastav, wife Vibha, son Kartick, daughter-in-law Priti, daughter Archita, and Dharmendra Nikumbh, family associate and brother of a police inspector, bragged about knowing all the right people in all the right places. The family, which offered returns of 180-400% on investments, dazzled potential investors by living it up — arriving in style for meetings in high-end cars with a coterie of armed security guards, having a bungalow in Versova and a duplex in Goregaon — and claimed to know Bollywood actors and senior IPS officers in Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh.
According to a police office who fell for the scheme, the family told potential investors from Mumbai Police that a former director general of police in Maharashtra was set to invest R200 crore in its scheme. “To gain police personnel’s trust, it also claimed be know many senior IPS officers in Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh,” he told mid-day.
mid-day’s front page report on Oct 14
Another victim said after the family began defaulting on payments, it cooked up a story of how Shrivastav, carrying R10 crore of the investors’ money, was waylaid by Maoists in Jharkhand and robbed.
Unit IX of the EOW is investigating the case. The alleged con family is on the run. A senior EOW officer said since the first lot of complainants came forward, a number of police personnel, too, have alleged bring duped by the family. Sources said a number of cheated police personnel are afraid of coming forward for fear of questions being raised about their sources of income.
Advocate Ravi Yadav representing the Shrivastavs said all allegations have been fabricated. “We have ample of evidence to prove that the Shrivastav family has not cheated anyone. Instead, they are being victimised. The two doctors who claim to be victims are my client’s partners in a company.”
Yadav said the complainants have not revealed all the facts. “We are ready to cooperate with the EOW. I have been getting death threats over the phone from complainants. I have complained to the police commissioner about this.