Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Cheating case: Bank accounts of HC ex-judge, brother frozen

Mumbai: The Azad Maidan police, probing a cheating and forgery case involving former Bombay HC Justice Michael Saldanha (74) and his younger brother Mark (70), have frozen several of their bank accounts and blocked the accounts they had been operating for mutual funds.
The HSBC Bank complained last year to the Azad Maidan police which booked Saldanhas for allegedly siphoning Rs 2.29 crore worth shares from their deceased older brother Patrick's demat account and transferring the proceeds to their accounts.The sessions court had earlier rejected their plea, holding that they “illegally and fraudulently and by forging and impersonation transferred a huge amount“ from their brother's account.

Last October, the Bombay HC granted interim anticipatory bail to Michael and Mark.“While the siphoned money was kept in some bank accounts, a portion of it was invested in mutual funds. We wrote to the banks concerned and froze the accounts. We also got the mutual funds blocked,“ said an officer.

“There are other accused too who forged documents like power of attorney after the death of their brother (Patrick),“ said the officer. Patrick (81) died on February 18, 2016. The prosecution said the shares were without documents like heirship certificate or will, and by representing that Patrick was alive between February 18-August 18, they presented forged delivery slips, cheques and a power of attorney . Michael was a Bombay HC judge between 1990-94 and Karnataka HC judge till retirement in 2004.

The Times of India, May 31, 2017

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Lost in Ponzi scam? Refund unit on cards for investors

Mateen Hafeez

Mumbai: Over 25 lakh investors, who lost more than Rs 10,000 crore in various schemes, can heave a sigh of relief. A separate refund unit will be formed by the economic offences wing (EOW) of the city police to handle cases of refund to investors, once the court passes an order. Observers welcomed the decision for a separate refund unit and said it will be easier for the lakhs of investors to come to one place (the refund unit), enquire about their money or case status. “Investors don't know whom to approach and how to get their money back. This time effective unit will help many ,“ said an observer.

The refund unit will be headed by a police officer of the rank of assistant commissioner in the EOW . As much as Rs 12,000 crore is stuck in cheating cases over the last six years.

As per police records, maximum investors who invested and lost are in the SpeakAsia multi-level marketing scheme case. “More than 24 lakh investors have lost in this Ponzi scheme. The EOW have filed charge sheets. While investors lost Rs 2,276 crore, over Rs 700 crore was laundered abroad. More than Rs 175 crore belonging to several accused has been frozen over the period and it will be distributed among the investors as per court order,“ said a police officer.

Likewise, more than 1 lakh people lost money in the Padma Vibhushan recipient Michael Ferreira-led QNet scam. While the official amount involved is around Rs 425 crore, police said investors could have lost more than Rs 1,000 crore.

Investors have been doing the rounds of courts and police offices since there was no clarity where they would get their money from once the court ordered auctioning of properties seized.
“Most victims in the above two schemes are from middleclass or lower middle-class.They have been going to police offices and courts. There are some investors whose lives were ruined due to these fraud schemes. The formation of a refund unit will be a great help to the affected investors,“ said a source.

While the NSEL case is still being probed, the police have attached properties worth more than Rs 6,000 crore while the amount involved was lesser in the FIR, Rs 5,600 crore . As many as 13,000 investors lost money .

The Times of India, May 30, 2017

Monday, May 29, 2017

Cabbie who lost 6 of family in EFW mishap hangs self

Mumbai: The taxi driver who was held responsible for the death of six members of his family after the speeding vehicle they were travelling in rammed into the Eastern Freeway wall last November, committed suicide in his rented Wadala residence on Friday night. Relatives said Mangur Verma (36) seemed tense since the Dongri police filed a chargesheet against him on May 9 for rash and negligent driving and culpable homicide not amounting to murder.
Neighbours found his body at 9pm and informed the police. “He was wearing a woman's nightdress when he hanged himself,“ said a neighbour. “Since the accident, he had become withdrawn and would not socialize. He had even started drinking a lot." A police officer told TOI, “There was no suicide note.While searching the house, we found a copy of the chargesheet.“ The body has been sent to KEM Hospital for post-mortem examination.

The Times of India, May 29, 2017

Saturday, May 27, 2017

BJP Muslim gambit fails, Cong shines

Mumbai: Winning 28 seats in the 84-member Malegaon Municipal Corporation, the Congress has emerged the biggest party . It is being said that with the help of NCP , which won 20 seats compared to only eight the last time, it could rule the civic house.
The BJP , which did not win a single seat in 2012 and had fielded the maximum number of Muslim candidates this time, won nine seats. However, none of its 57 Muslim nominees won.Its victories came from the Hindu sections of the Muslim-dominated powerloom town of Malegaon.

Interestingly , the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM), which made its debut, secured seven seats. But MIM's Nashik president and former mayor, Abdul Malik, who contested from two seats, lost both.The Shiv Sena, which got 11 seats in the last election, posted a tally of 13 this time.
Shaikh Aasif, the sitting Congress MLA who is credited with the big win, said: “We worked for the development of the city and `vikas' was our main campaign point. We will be wor king for the development of the town.“

Malegaon mayor Ibrahim Seth (NCP) lost to Congress.Two-time MLA Shaikh Rasheed and his wife Tahira, a former mayor, won on Congress tickets.NCP's Nabi Ahmed, a businessman, and his brother Zafar Ahmed (Congress) both won. They stay in the same house and both Congress and NCP flags were hoisting side by side on the terrace on Friday.

The Times of India, May 27, 2017

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Bomb chat: 6 Kerala youths released

Mateen Hafeez

Mumbai: Six Kerala youths, who were questioned by three government agencies over the last two days after a commuter in local train heard them talking about `bomb', were given clean chit and released on Tuesday.The youths, including a minor, got down at Panvel and took atrain for CST on Monday . While in the train, a co-passenger heard them using the word `bomb' repeatedly over the phone and alerted the police.
Niket Kaushik, police commissioner (Railways), said, “The ATS, RPF and GRP questioned them and nothing adverse was found. They were released."

“Due to network problem the person on the other side was unable to hear so they were repeating the word bomb (for Bombay). We checked their mobile phones and other belongings and found that they were telling the truth,“ said an officer. The complainant passenger had also told police that the youths were chatting through WhatsApp on anumber with country code +97.Later, it transpired that fathers of three youths work in the middle east and the message was for one of them.

The Times of India, May 25, 2017

Jailed ex-MLA sent to custody for abusing cop


  Former MLA Ramesh Kadam, who is lodged in Byculla jail for his alleged involvement in a Rs 365-crore scam, was remanded in police custody for a day for allegedly abusing a police officer outside the jail last week.

 On May 18, when Kadam was being escorted out of jail for check-up, he started arguing with assistant police inspector Manoj Pawar. A cop shot his outburst on his phone.In the clip, Kadam is seen taunting Pawar and asking someone to call up additional police commissioner (Aswathi) Dorje and complain that Pawar demanded Rs 25,000. On Wednesday, police told Sewri court that the extortion allegation against Pawar was false. They claimed Kadam used his phone en route to court.

The Times of India, May 25, 2017

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Jailed ex-MLA caught on video abusing cop

Was Being Taken Out By Officer For Hospital Check-Up


Mateen Hafeez 

 Mumbai: A video of former MLA Ramesh Kadam, who is lodged in Byculla Jail in a Rs 365-crore scam, abusing an on-duty cop at the jail's main gate has gone viral, inviting an inquiry .
The incident occurred around 10.45am, Thursday , when Kadam was being escorted out of the jail for a medical check-up at JJ Hospital. “Once outside the gate, assistant police inspector Manoj Pawar asked him to stand on the side, which might have angered Kadam (once an NCP MLA from Solapur),“ said asource. In the video, Kadam is seen in a threatening posture abusing Pawar. Kadam was arrested in August 2015 for his suspected role in a scam involving the Lokshahir Annabhau Sathe Development Corporation (LASDC), of which he was chairman.

Joint police commissioner (law and order) Deven Bharti told TOI, “We have asked Akhilesh Singh (DCP zone-III) to inquire into the matter. We will take action as per the findings of the probe report.“ Pawar approached the Nagapda police station on Thursday and told them about the incident. The police noted down the matter in a diary , but no FIR or NC was registered.

At the time of the incident, Kadam and a few cops were waiting for a police van when Kadam started arguing with Pawar. A constable recorded it on his cellphone. In the video, Kadam can be seen taunting Pawar, saying he was behaving like a woman. He went on to tell Pawar that he was behaving like a eunuch.Kadam is also heard asking someone to call up additional police commissioner (Aswathi) Dorje and complain that Pawar demanded Rs 25,000 from him.

Abusing Pawar, Kadam told him to open the jail gate again so that he could go in as he wasn't in the mood to go to the hospital. While Pawar asked some cops to take Kadam inside, nobody moved. “I will bring a privilege motion against you (translation from Marathi),“ Kadam is heard threatening Pawar.

In February last year, a senior medi cal officer attending to undertrials at Arthur Road jail filed a complaint against Kadam (who was then at that jail), alleging that he had abused and threatened him. Based on Dr Rahul Ghule's complaint, the N M Joshi Marg police registered an offence under the IPC's sections 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of duty), 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of peace), and 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation).

The Times of India, May 20, 2017