After several warnings, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) declared that it does not consider cryptocurrencies to be a legal tender and directed the Indian banks to withdraw from crypto transactions. The decision was taken to prevent crypto-based scams. After almost three months of this announcement, two men have been arrested for allegedly duping 30 crores from 1,800 people, as reported by PTI on 2nd August.
Gaurav Aneja and Nelson Lobo had formed a fake cryptocurrency company and were operating to earn quick profits. Aneja, a native of Sahibabad, Uttar Pradesh and Lobo from Mumbai were caught in Vasundhara, Uttar Pradesh said Akash Tomar, the superintendent of city police. The police arrested them based on a complaint from around 50 investors.
The duo confessed that they had launched Ripple Future, a fake US origin cryptocurrency company and they would promise the investors to triple their investments in a period of 250 days. Aneja and Lobo were further operating daily and weekly payment schemes, despite such companies being banned in India, informed Tomar.
An FIR under the Section 420 for cheating and Section 406 for criminal breach of trust has been lodged under the Indian Penal Code (IPC). The company’s data has also been seized to investigate the case further. The police have not yet clarified if the fake company is affiliated with Ripple’s parent company in any manner.
However, this is not rare that people lost money in a cryptocurrency scam. Several crypto-based Ponzi schemes, including those involving Indian celebrities and politicians, have been reported in the past months.