CHENNAI: Luck ran out for a trio, engaged in making fake educational certificates for over a decade in the city, after their thriving business got the attention of the cops. The three were nabbed while affixing a stamp on one of the certificates kept ready for delivery at a bus stop on Arignar Anna Road in suburban Vyasarpadi, on Friday.
Police said P Karuna aka Karunakaran (43), of Washermenpet, the prime accused was printing fake certificates for SSLC, HSC, Polytechnic, Arts & Sciences Degree, and Engineering and distributed them with a price tag of `2,000 per order. His clientele mostly were harvested near the Passport Centres and by personal reference.
His two aides, N Moorthy and G Devaraj, too were arrested when they were about to deliver the certificates which included provisional, convocation and consolidated mark sheet, for a course at Anna University. Since they had forgotten to affix a stamp, one of them brought the stamp to the spot for stamping!
Karuna was earlier arrested for printing Counterfeit Currency in his printing press by the CB-CID in 1999 and was then arrested along with his other aide Kanniyappan by the city police in 2001 for supplying fabricated certificates. However, they went underground for more than a decade evading arrest when a non-bailable warrant was issued against them until now.
Pulianthope Deputy Commissioner R Sudhakar said the trio were picked up on suspicion and preliminary inquiry led to the seizure of various machinery and hundreds of certificates prepared to be delivered from the office the trio was running at a residence in Perambur.
“They had offered their service only to those who were planning to get a job abroad where those who had actually failed the examinations can earn better remuneration and the SSLC certificate aimed obtaining ECNR stamping on the passport”, he said, adding, “They don’t keep track of their clientele and was unsure of how many certificates they had printed.”
As many as 300 rubber stamps were seized from their possession. A manhunt for two more aides of Karuna is on.