Thursday, January 23, 2014

Bank manager, aide nabbed for stealing cheques from press


Mateen Hafeez TNN

Mumbai: The economic offences wing (EOW) of the city crime branch has arrested a bank manager and an auto consultant for stealing cheques from the press, opening accounts in banks, forging signatures and withdrawing money.

    The accused, Hiren Deepak Shah (34; customer service manager at a bank) and Amardeep Srivastav (33; auto consultant who resides at Mira Road), siphoned off Rs 1.45 crore from the accounts of three companies: Bhushan Steel, Archies and Earth Infrastructure, all based in New Delhi. 

    “A gang of six to eight people came in touch with Srivastav. The gang members, who are yet to be caught, told him to befriend a bank manager in Andheri (East). The gang would steal cheques from a printing press at Marol in Andheri (East) and Navi Mumbai,” said a police source. “They would open envelopes containing cheque books and tear cheques at random. They would then seal the envelopes back. The cheque books with missing cheques would go from the press to the bank to customers through courier companies.”   He said people generally do not count cheques in a cheque
book or check if they are arranged according to serial numbers. “The gang took advantage of this.” 

    Explaining how the gang was busted, the police source said the bank received a cheque of Rs 9 lakh, issued by one of the three firms. But the firm stopped payment. When bank authorities spoke to the firm, they were told that it did not issue a cheque. The bank inquired about Pankaj Kamal Khanna, under whose name the cheque was issued: the account was opened in September 2013 and till December, Rs 70 lakh had been deposited.

    The matter was referred to the EOW. After going through records, including Khanna’s contact details, the police zeroed in on Srivastav, who spilled the beans on Shah.

The Times of India, January 23, 2014

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