GST scam accused bares links to four associates

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A fortnight after arrest of the prime accused in one of the biggest tax evasion scams involving fake transactions worth Rs 1000 crore to Rs 1200 crore, the CGST officials have got links to four Indore-based suspects believed to be closely associated with him in gathering false documents and invoices. During interrogation, the prime accused Raju Kharriya alias Raju Thakkar, revealed names of his four close aids operating from Indore and primarily involved in forming fake companies, sources from the CGST said. Kharriya had defrauded exchequer of Rs 150 crore by showing fake transactions, invoices of dummy companies. He was arrested on May 8 and before him two other suspects were also nabbed by the department. The department has initiated investigation against these suspects. A CGST official wishing anonymity said, “Kharriya has revealed names of some important persons operating from Indore.

We have checked their background and learnt that they are fraudsters and have been active for quite some time in gathering credentials of innocent people and forming fake companies on papers.” With this, 25 people in Indore are on the radar of CGST team and investigation is under process. The estimated tax fraud is Rs 150 crore which is unlikely to the recovered, as per sources. Kharriya has also hinted names of some dealers from Gujarat. “Many people have fallen in their trap because they did not check background of person they are purchasing goods from. These fraudsters used to sell goods from one unknown source to another with fake invoices,” the official said. A team under the Commissioner CGST, Indore, was formed to investigate the scam that is being expected to have involvement of close to 400 dealers across Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat and Mumbai. Sleuths have carried raids at multiple locations and seized address and identity proofs among other documents of innocent people gathered illegally to register fake firms and defraud exchequer.

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