Mumbai: Con couple posed as escort and cop to lure men and extort them
The woman posted her number on a website for a 'friendship club', where unsuspecting men would contact her; incidentally the cops tracked them the same way
A 44-year-old businessman thought he was in for some no-strings-attached fun when he contacted a woman through a ‘friendship club’. Instead, he paid a heavy price when the woman’s partner turned up claiming to be a police officer and extorted Rs 1.35 lakh and his Honda City car.
Mohammad Faizal would show the hapless men this fake ID card, posing as ACP Gaurav Shivajirao Shinde. The businessman was shocked to learn he was a fake cop
Five days after the incident, the con couple was arrested yesterday from Malad by the Crime Branch Unit XII, and the Vanrai police are also investigating how many others were targeted by the duo.
After finding Sheetal’s number on the website of the friendship club, the businessman contacted her. They decided to meet on March 9 outside Goregaon station, where he invited her into his car. Illustrations/Uday Mohite
According to sources, the accused worked as a team to dupe the victims, each playing a different role – the woman Neeta Khora alias Sheetal (35) posed as an escort and posted her number on the website of a friendship club, where unsuspecting men would contact her. Her accomplice Mohammad Faizal (31) would then pose as an Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) from the Crime Branch and threaten and extract money from the hapless men.
They sat and talked in the car for a bit and then decided to head to a nearby lodge. But just as he was about to drive there, the woman’s accomplice, Faizal, knocked on the window
“The accused revealed during the interrogation that they are husband and wife. The lady had posted her mobile number on the website of a friendship club, so anyone interested in a friendship with her can contact her. The victim rang her up saying he was interested and wanted to date her,” a Crime Branch official told mid-day.
Faizal, brandishing his fake Mumbai Police ACP ID, said he had caught them in a vulgar act at a public place and threatened legal action. Sheetal, who pretended she didn’t know him, immediately said ‘Jaane do, chahiye to mera pure valuable le lo’ and gave him all her cash and ornaments, including her mangalsutra. After Faizal let her go, the businessman had little choice but to follow suit and give Faizal whatever he wanted
They met on March 9, but he had barely spent a few minutes with her in his car when her accomplice busted the party under the guise of an ACP (see illustration). It was only on the next day that the businessman realised he had been duped, and he lodged an FIR at the Vanrai police station under Sections 170 (personating a public servant) and 420 (cheating) of the IPC.
Faizal demanded Rs 1.5 lakh, so the businessman took him to his Bandra residence and gave him R1.35 lakh. But Faizal was not satisfied and also confiscated his car. He told the victim to visit the Vanrai police station for verification of documents the next day and then take his car back
Unit XII of the Crime Branch was also conducting a parallel investigation, and they found Sheetal’s number on the same website and used it to track down the couple at their residence at Chincholi Bunder locality in Malad yesterday. All investigations will now be handled entirely by the Vanrai police, with the Crime Branch having handed over the accused on the same day.
But the next day, the businessman arrived at the police station and was shocked to learn that neither was his car there, nor was there any police officer by the name on the badge
“The con-couple targeted many more people as well in the past, but that is a part of investigation. We have handed over the accused to the Vanrai police, who will investigate further,” said a Crime Branch official.