Monday, May 9, 2011

Nigerian arrested for Ayurveda scam

The police on Saturday arrested a Nigerian citizen, whom they believe is part of a large online scam that was duping Indians by asking them to export Ayurvedic medicines for a fictitious British company.

According to police officers investigating the case, a fictitious British company had contacted Prashant Gangam, a student of business management in Mumbai, online.

A man, who identified himself as John Richard, began chatting with Gangam, telling him the company wanted to import Ayurvedic medicines from India. He asked if Gangam was interested in buying the medicines for the company and receive a commission for exporting them.

Last month, Gangam fell for the bait. "Richard asked Gangam to get in touch with a woman in Mumbai, who would supply the medicines to him," said Police Inspector S Awte, from Kalachowki police station.

In a few days, a Nigerian who identified himself as Solomon Moris Duke, 31, visited Gangam. He provided Gangam with packets, which contained an unidentified powder, and asked him to pay Rs 31 lakh for it, stating that the powder was medicinal.

Assuming that the packets contained drugs, Gangam contacted the Kalachowki police station. "Gangam got suspicious and approached us. On Saturday, when the Duke came to collect the money, we arrested him," said Awte. Duke has been arrested on charges of cheating. The police are trying to trace Richard and the woman involved.

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