Nagpur: Sakkadara Police have busted a gang from Thane city that duped hundreds of men on pretext of providing them jobs as ‘male escort’ for women customers. The gang was operating since last seven years and duped men from Nagpur, Pune, Thane and Mumbai. The gang was publishing advertisements in newspapers in the name of ‘Nisha Friendship Club’ with a job to “serve high profile rich women and earn money”.
“The victims thought it was a lucrative job that could earn them some good bucks and walked into the trap,” said Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) Zone IV Nilesh Bharne, in a press conference on Monday. Most of the victims avoided lodging complaint with police fearing social ignominy.
The case came to light only when an unemployed 35-year-old married man from Sakkardara, who lost all his savings, confessed with his wife. The depressed man was on the verge of committing suicide. His wife took him to Sakkardara Police and narrated the entire episode.
“The jobless man had contacted the mobile number in the advertisement in May 2018. It was received by a woman who assured him of the job and instructed him to deposit Rs 1,000 as enrollment fee. The woman called the man after two days and asked him to credit Rs 15,000 to book a room at a hotel. The man had mortgaged gold ornaments of his wife, who is working in a private company, and transacted the amount in bank account of the lady. This went on for two months and the man ended up crediting a total of Rs 1.26 lakh in six transactions,” DCP Bharne said.
This loss of all savings left the man depressed and on the verge of ending his life. But his wife noticed his strange behaviour and came to know of the fraud. During investigation, police studied the money transaction details and phone calls details and zeroed in on Thane and Pune area. After getting pictures of the accused, the police intensified searches in Ghodbunder Road area of Thane and arrested the accused, Ritesh alias Bherulal Bhagwanlal Chamar (Bairawa) (34), a resident of Flat No 103, Vihang Wali, Phase-1, Kasarwadwali, Ghodbunder Road, and four women.
Under the guidance of DCP Zone IV Bharne and ACP Ravindra Kapgate the arrest was made by Sakkardara PI Sandipan Pawar, API Ulhas Bhusari, PSIs Manoj Orke, Manish Hiwarkar and staff including Raju Dange, Arun Khorgade, Sandip Borsare, Shaliram Shende, Bhushan Uddhar, Vidyadhar Pawnikar, Rohan Choudhary, Pawan Lambat, WPC Kiran, Ujwala and NPC Dipak of Cyber Cell.