A former IPS officer and cyber expert was arrested by Pune City Police Cyber Cell on Saturday for allegedly deceiving the investigator by fraudulently transferring crores worth of crypto from crypto wallets to their personal accounts.
The defendants have been identified as former IPS officer Ravindra Patil and cyber expert Pankaj Ghode. The two defendants were previously helping Pune police solve a cryptocurrency fraud case in 2018.
Vijay Palsule, Assistant Commissioner of Police in the Computer and Economic Crimes Wing, said: “Ravindra Patil started working as a cyber expert specializing in crypto after taking a Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS) from the Indian Police Service (IPS) In 2018, several complaints were received in Pune for various crypto cases and based on these complaints, two separate cases related to cryptocurrency fraud were registered with the police stations of Dattawadi and Nigadi police.
“During the investigation of these cases, the police arrested 17 defendants and Ravindra Patil and Pankaj Ghode were assisting the police as cybercrypto experts,” Palsule said.
He further stated that Patil allegedly transferred some of the cryptocurrencies from his account and that Ghode provided screenshots of the accounts to the police by manipulating the numbers, both allegedly misused the data provided by the investigator (IO ) of the time for technical analysis purposes.
“The duo’s involvement came to light after an investigation was ordered when their activity was found to be suspicious. Post-KYC police officials confirmed their role and a case was recorded at a cyber-security post. Pune city police,” Palsule added.
The two defendants were arrested at their home by cyber police and charged under Article 420 (Deceit and dishonest inducement to deliver goods),409 (Criminal breach of trust by a public official, or by a banker, merchant or an agent), 465 (Punishment for forgery) of the Indian Penal Code as well as 66(c) (Punishment for identity theft) of the Information Technology (IT) Act and under the Privacy Act of Depositors Interests (MPID) of Maharashtra.
The two defendants were brought before the court, which remanded them in police custody for 7 days. Further investigation is underway to determine the exact amount of fraud.55