Cyber police at BKC on Friday arrested three African nationals including a Nigerian and two others from Ivory Coast for hacking into the email of Rajya Sabha member Husain Dalwai (Congress) and sending an SOS email to all his contacts list seeking immediate financial help for treatment of his daughter as they are abroad.
The ID was hacked twice between September 25-October 16. Dalwai learnt about the fraud when he received many calls from his friends asking about his daughter’s well-being and the mode to send money.
The fraudsters also mentioned in the email that the MP would not be available on his mobile and can communicate only by email.
Dalwai’s personal assistant, Rajesh Panchal, filed a complaint on October 13 on learning that a city doctor had transferred 70,000 to the bank account. Dalwai took to social media to alert friends that his email was hacked.
“The fraudsters sent the mail in two parts. The first said he was in financial distress abroad as his daughter was undergoing treatment. It said those willing to help should reply, after which they would be given details of accounts where the money should be sent,” Panchal said.
He said the MP learnt about the hacking on September 25.
“For two days we received at least 100 calls on his mobile phone and office landline. All his friends asked to whom they should send the money. We stopped them from transferring the money but the doctor transferred the money. The doctor called the MP after transferring the money and even email the transfer receipt to check if he received the money. The account has been frozen,” he said.
The doctor said that he would have to take permission from the MP before speaking to TOI.
DCP (cyber) Akbar Pathan supervised a team of senior inspector Ravi Sardesai, inspector S S Sahasrabhudhe, sub-inspectors Vijay Rane, Shailesh Pawar and Vardhraj Parshi and detection staff that stayed in New Delhi for a week and arrested Konate Mohamed (31) and Okpeaifoh Michael (31), from Ivory Coast, and Quattara N Golhaud (32), from Nigeria, from a rented apartment from where they have been operating for few months.
“The kingpin has been arrested. They has demanded Rs50,000-70,000. Several debit cards, pen drives and a laptop have been seized” said Pathan.
The trio, booked for cheating, impersonation and identity theft, are in police custody till November 2.