A week after the massive ATM fraud hit the city and left more than 70 bank customers duped of their money, a 28- year-old Romanian national was arrested today from Greater Kailash area in New Delhi in connection with the case. Silviu Florin Spiridon, who was arrested this afternoon after the team of city police officers followed him in an auto, is suspected to be the mastermind of this fraud.
Police have seized various gadgets including laptops, mobile phones, skimming devices, magnetic chips and other expensive items from his luxurious house which he had rented. The officers in plainclothes had been keeping a watch at the ATM kiosks from where money was withdrawn in the last week.
Spiridon, who was earlier seen in the CCTV footages, entered into an ATM kiosk of a nationalised bank almost five kilometres away from his residence this morning. However, minutes after he entered into that kiosk he hurried out of there probably realising that someone is keeping an eye on him and boarded an auto immediately. The cops followed him in auto. “Our officers kept chasing Spiridon for a time but lost track of his way after his auto entered into Greater Kailash as the neighbourhood is full of lonely stretches of roads crisscrossing each other. However, the officers went from home to home and practically knocked at each door before they could catch him,” said joint CP (crime) Murlidhar Sharma.
We have learnt that he had come to India thrice this year after scanning information from the Foreigners Regional Registration Card (FRRO) and entered here with a tourist visa for the last time on 14 October, he added. Police suspect that the accused, who is a resident of Constanta in Romania, had taken help from local handlers in committing the crime.
“We are verifying other data to check whether he had come to Kolkata himself. We are grilling him to find out his accomplices as we are sure that at least two more persons are involved in this crime. He is also being interrogated as whether as to how he got the details of the cards. We are trying to ascertain whether he had laid his hands on the data shared by the other fraudsters on the dark web,” said the senior officer.
The accused will be brought in Kolkata tomorrow in a transit remand. The top cops have also given strong message to the owners of the city homes who rent out homes that they must submit C-Form at local police stations if any foreigner is staying at his residence.