KOCHI: The Ernakulam Central Police on Saturday arrested a Palakkad-native on charges of cheating the public and swindling around `16 crore from them.
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According to the police officials, Jithu Menon, 46, allegedly collected money from customers, promising to return them double the amount after investing it in gold. The accused had allegedly set up a financial institution named Artic Diamonds and Jewellers Private Limited in Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
“In addition to Jithu, there are five more directors in the company, which is registered in Palakkad. The accused lured customers by showing brochures of the Palakkad office. In Kerala, the company has branches in Palakkad and Ernakulam, while it has around eight branches in Tamil Nadu. The accused has allegedly swindled around `16 crore from 2,500 people,” the police officials said.
The company had also been running a scheme of collecting `100 each from customers every month, for the past three-to-four years.
“The investors came out with complaints after the company forfeited its promise on profit sharing. It is understood that many people have fallen in the trap, losing the money they had invested for the marriage of their children and for purchasing property. In Kochi, the company has branches at Oberon Mall and Warriam Road,” the official added.
“More details could be revealed only after the arrest of the other directors,” said circle-inspector Y Nizamuddin.