KOCHI: The police on Friday arrested an agent involved in over 30 cases of cheating people after promising them visas and jobs in the UK. The police also recovered fake passports, passports of the visa applicants, different chequebooks and promissory notes from his vehicle.
Shajahan, 30, a native of Chavakkad in Thrissur who lived in Kadaburu near Mysuru in Karnataka, had gone into hiding after the Kothamangalam police registered a case against him for duping two brothers of `6.1 lakh after offering them jobs in the UK. He was arrested from a remote village near Meenakshipuram in Palakkad. Though Shajahan tried to escape upon seeing the police officers, he was chased and arrested.
“Shajahan took money from several people by claiming that he had influential friends in the UK who would help them arrange visas and jobs there. Upon inspecting two of his bank accounts, we found transactions of over Rs 30 crore,” said a police officer.
None of the persons Shajahan duped had met him in person, said the officer. “He contacted them only via video calls. Based on the transactions in his accounts, we suspect he cheated more than 100 people. We are expecting more people to come forward with complaints,” said the officer.
The officers said Shajahan maintained a large friends circle and targeted the victims through them. “Most of the people who lost money had approached Shajahan through his friends. While a friend of his in Thiruvananthapuram had introduced him to 13 people who were looking to secure jobs in the UK, another in Kothamangalam introduced him to four persons. In return, Shajahan paid commission to his friends,” said another officer. The police said Shajahan possessed three UK SIM cards, which he used to contact the applicants to gain their trust,” said the official.