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Case of Cyber Extortion

He does not know much about computer hacking, yet 51-year-old cyber criminal Pranab Mitra has stunned even the cyber crime investigation cell of Mumbai police with his bizarre fraud on the Net. Mitra, a former executive of Gujarat Ambuja Cement, was arrested on Monday for posing as a woman and seducing online an Abu Dhabi-based man,

 thereby managing to extort Rs 96 lakh from him. Investigating officer, Assistant Commissioner of Police, J.S. Sodi, said Mitra has been remanded to police custody till June 24, and has been booked for cheating, impersonation, blackmail and extortion under sections 420, 465, 467, 471, 474 of the IPC, read with the newly formed Information Technology Act.

Mitra posed as a woman, Rita Basu, and created a fake e-mail ID through which he contacted one V.R. Ninawe. According to the FIR, Mitra trapped Ninawe in a ‘‘cyber-relationship’’ sending emotional messages and indulging in online sex since June 2002.Later, Mitra sent an e-mail that ‘‘she would commit suicide’’ if Ninawe ended the relationship. He also gave him ‘‘another friend Ruchira Sengupta’s’’ e-mail ID which was in fact his second bogus address. When Ninawe mailed at the other ID he was shocked to learn that Mitra had died. Then Mitra began the emotional blackmail by calling up Abu Dhabi to say that police here were searching for Ninawe. Ninawe panicked on hearing the news and asked Mitra to arrange for a good advocate for his defence. Ninawe even deposited a few lakh in the bank as advocate fees. Mitra even sent e-mails as high court and police officials to extort more money. Ninawe finally came down to Mumbai to lodge a police case.

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