GUWAHATI, June 2 - Police probing the call centre scam in the city are trying to locate the victims in the US, who were defrauded, and the investigators are likely to take help from the police there.
Two fraud call centres were recently busted in Geetanagar area by a CID team and some 38 people, including the main kingpin Rajesh, were rounded up. At least twenty-seven accused have already been forwarded to judicial custody.
"Rajesh is known by different names. They used to collect information regarding US citizens through various websites. Then they used 'call blast' to contact them in the guise of federal officials," said DIG (CID) Mridulananda Sarma.
Call blast is a web-based automatic outbound dialling solution that scrolls through the existing phone contacts and sends out a pre-recorded message. The calls were made using the VPN and the process made it difficult to track the caller. The receiver's phone used to display a US phone number.
The gullible US citizens were charged with various crimes by the callers who were given specific scripts while speaking to the victims.
"Many used to fall in the trap and the callers would suggest legal aide. Up to 500 US dollars were charged from the victims. The money was paid in gift coupons of Apple, Google, etc. The racket had a team in the US. The US team was given the gift coupon numbers for encashment. Rajesh's team was paid the money in Gujarat. We are trying to find the money trail, how exactly it was paid," said the DIG.
The call centre used to earn up to Rs 70 lakh in a month by duping the US citizens. Some employees at the call centre, who used to work at night, were given salaries up to Rs 25,000.
Rajesh had opened the two call centres at Geetanagar in February. Three centres run by him were busted two years back.
Investigators now have their task cut out as they try to locate the victims.
They have now sought the logs from the Internet Service Provider through which they will be able to verify that the calls were made through VPN.
"At the same time, we are trying to identify the victims and contact them. We may have to go to the US for the purpose," said the DIG.
A special team has been engaged to gather technical evidence.
It will not be easy for the investigators to get a conviction of the accused if the victims are not produced in the court.