Promised Job in Thailand, Forced to Commit Cyber Fraud in Laos; Mumbai Crime Branch Arrested 2 People

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Promised Job in Thailand

Promised Job in Thailand, Forced to Commit Cyber Fraud in Laos; Mumbai Crime Branch Arrested 2 People

The Mumbai crime branch has arrested 2 individuals who lure people to give foreign jobs and forcefully pressure them to do cybercrime.

Mumbai, Maharashtra:  Mumbai Crime Branch has arrested two people for cyber fraud on the pretext of providing jobs abroad.  The arrested accused Jerry Phillips Jacob and Godfrey Thomas Alvares are residents of Borivali in Mumbai.  The team of ACP Mahesh Desai and Senior Inspector Laxmikant Salunkhe, led by DCP Vishal Thakur, laid a trap and arrested these two accused on Tuesday.  Investigation has revealed that both the accused were in contact with different agents in the country.

It is suspected that in the last few months, this gang sent more than four hundred people abroad on the pretext of jobs and forced them to commit cyber fraud or gave them training.  According to an official, so far 12 people have complained to the Indian Embassy.  On the basis of this, Mumbai Police registered an FIR.

Used to Come in Contact with People with the Help of Social Media

According to the officer, the arrested accused used to come in contact with people with the help of social media.  He used to advertise on social media, in which only his mobile number was mentioned.  There was no address of any office etc.  People used to contact them with the help of this advertisement.

They used to offer jobs in call centers in Thailand.  They promised to get work visas but used to send them to Bangkok on tourist visas.  Then from Bangkok airport people were sent to another airport in Thailand, Chiang Rai.

After coming out of the airport, people were taken to some faraway place by taxi.  From there they were taken to Laos by river or road.  Talk of taking them has also come to light in another country.  According to the Crime Branch official, there are call centers in different buildings in Laos.

It is being run by Chinese citizens. In these call centers, they are asked to commit cyber fraud and fraud with foreign citizens.

After Lockdown the Accused Went to Laos

According to the Crime Branch official, after the lockdown, the accused went to Laos and started running fake call centers there.  They made fake calls to prey on people in Europe, America, and Canada.  They offered jobs and hired Indians from different states by luring them to work in Thailand.

After the people arrived in Thailand, their passports and phones were taken away and they were held hostage in the Golden Triangle area of Laos, a crime hub.  The investigation is still ongoing as more victims may be trapped there.

The Accused Implicated More Than 100 People

Officially the police have registered a case of only 12 victims, but there are more than 100 who have been implicated by the accused.  The crime came to light when one of the victims, Siddharth Yadav (23), a resident of Thane, managed to escape.

He returned to India with the help of the Indian Embassy in Laos.  Siddharth Yadav, a hotel management graduate, lodged an EIIR with the Vile Parle police.  According to Yadav’s complaint, he was approached for the job through a relative in December 2022.  He was offered a lucrative call center job in Thailand at a salary of ₹65,000–75,000 per month.

Passports Seized

However, upon reaching Chiang Rai, Thailand, he was transported to the Laos border by a Chinese national along with other victims.  Their passports were confiscated and they were illegally deported by boat to Laos.

Upon reaching the Golden Triangle area in Laos, Yadav and his fellow victims met two Indian nationals, identified as Godfrey and Sunny, who forced them to work in a cybercrime operation.

Assault and Threats

The victims were instructed to create fake social media accounts to target people from Western countries.  Their aim was to deceive customers into investing in cryptocurrencies.  When people protested, they were beaten and threatened.

They were not paid for their jobs as promised and were kept under constant surveillance.  He was not allowed to go anywhere.  They were kept separate from the outside world and were given food only once a day.  He made several attempts to obtain his passport, but most were unsuccessful.

5 Indian Victims were Rescued

After embassy intervention and pressure from the Laotian police, 5 Indian victims were rescued.  While some got their passports quickly.  Yadav’s return was delayed because he was negotiating with his smuggler, who demanded money in exchange for his passport.

After Yadav reached India, he immediately reached a police station and lodged an FIR.

About The Author:

Yogesh Naager is a content marketer who specializes in the cybersecurity and B2B space.  Besides writing for the News4Hackers blog, he’s also written for brands including CollegeDunia, Utsav Fashion, and NASSCOM.  Naager entered the field of content in an unusual way.  He began his career as an insurance sales executive, where he developed an interest in simplifying difficult concepts.  He also combines this interest with a love of narrative, which makes him a good writer in the cybersecurity field.  In the bottom line, he frequently writes for Craw Security.

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