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Rajkot bizman loses ₹16 lakh in fake NRI inheritance scam

Updated: Apr 5th, 2024

NYCB Bank inheritance fraud

A Rajkot-based businessman has been duped of ₹16.15 lakh by a cyber fraudster who posed as a bank official from the US and offered the inheritance of a deceased NRI (non-resident Indian).

The victim, Nilesh Padhar, 40, who lives in Rajkot’s Kothariya Main Road area and deals in online trading, received a message on his Facebook profile from a woman named Natasha Mitra on July 24, 2023.

The message said, “I expected your request message. I feel, I like you, I have something special for you. Send ‘interested’ to my email ID.”

Padhar responded to the message and started chatting with a woman through email, who identified herself as Cynthia and claimed to be the chief admin officer of NYCB (New York Community Bancorp Ltd) Bank in the US.

Duping the victim into the inheritance scam

The woman sent him her bank ID card and bank certificate and told him that an Indian businessman had died in the US and had a fixed deposit (FD) of $7.5 m in his name, which had now grown to $7.875 m with interest.

Cynthia claimed that the businessman had no legal heirs and offered to make Padhar the heir to the estate in return for a 60% share of the money.

She sent him a certificate of inheritance from NYCB Bank in his name.

Padhar started receiving emails from the bank, which said that the deceased businessman’s bank account had been closed and that a lawyer would need to be hired to reopen it and notarize the documents.

He was asked to deposit money into a bank account provided by the scammers.

Padhar deposited a total of ₹16.15 lakh in the account in several instalments.

When the scammers asked him for another ₹20 lakh to prepare more documents, he became suspicious and filed a complaint with the Cyber Crime police station on Apr 4.

The complaint names the holder of the Facebook profile, Natasha Mitra, the holders of other email addresses used by the scammers, and the holders of the bank accounts into which the money was deposited.

Also read:

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