Abdul Gafoor was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED), one of the suspects in the Morris Coin Fraud case. This fraud erupted in India in January 2022. It remains one of largest in India.
ED, the Ministry of Finance’s economic intelligence wing, tracks high-value economic crimes. After several cases were filed against Morris Coin and Nishad K, the case was taken over by ED in 2021.
Gafoor was the director of Stox Global Brokers Private Limited. He used shell companies to divert investors money to shell entities. According to reports in Indian media, Gafoor was taken into judicial custody under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act. ED will likely request Gafoor’s custody to interrogate, according Indian media.
Background of the Case
In September 2020, the Morris Coin fraud case was first brought to our attention by a victim who complained to the local police in Kerala. The case concerned ‘Morris Coin Investment Plan300 Days’. Nishad K was later arrested and granted bail.
At the time, the police did not realise the extent of the fraud. After being released on bail, Nishad was reportedly unable to be traced and fled the country. In an effort to locate him, ED has attached his Indian properties.
After completing an investigation, seven people were arrested by the police in November 2021. They discovered that Nishad, 31, had deceived at least 900 investors for $160 million.
They were acting as conduits and collection agents for Nishad and their bank accounts showed that they would transfer between Rs 90 and 100 crore (approx. They transferred $1.3 billion to various accounts associated with Nishad. Police discovered that money taken as investments in the ICO Morris Coin, a nonexistent digital currency, was diverted into shell companies and used to buy real estate among other immovable assets.
ED investigations revealed that investors were required to invest Rs 15,000 (approx. $190 for 10 Morris Coins. The lock-in period is 300 days. Investors will be able to receive a return of 3% each month during this time.
The Morris Coin agents promised investors that the price of the coin would soar once it is listed on exchanges. This was mostly true from the lockdown period in 2020 to the time Nishad was detained in September that year.
More cases of crypto fraud
This is the third case of crypto fraud that has been reported by Indian media in the last 15 days. CryptoPotato reported on March 27 that four people were arrested by the Gujarat police for asking a businessman to invest in Bitcoin.
Another case involved a former top officer in police and a technical expert being arrested in Maharashtra for stealing cryptocurrency coins while they assisted the police investigation.
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