New Delhi: The Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of Delhi Police, after conducting preliminary investigation into a complaint of cheating, has registered an FIR under Sections 420, 406, 467, 468, 471, and 120B of Indian Penal Code (IPC) against the prime accused Sanjay Saxena, resident of Shanti Niketan, New Delhi, his accomplices, including a Chartered Account and owners of LD Group (London Diamond and Gold Jewellery) for conning and duping the directors/owners of Focus Imaging and Research Centre Private Limited, New Delhi of funds running into crores of rupees – by flaunting “Dubai Connections” and on the pretext of advancing the victims a loan of Rs. 75 crore at rock bottom rate of interest (6%).
The facts of the case as reflected by the FIR lodged by the Delhi EOW on Monday 20 July 2020 are as follows:
Dr Prashant Sarin, the authorised signatory of Focus Imaging and Research Center Pvt. Ltd., having its registered office at C-10, Green Park Extension, New Delhi-110016, lodge the complaint against the accused persons – Sanjay Saxena, L.D. Group, Chander Shekar Bora, Prem Sharma, CA and other unnamed persons and associates accusing them of commission of heinous cognizable offences.
It was sometime in July-2018, Dr Sarin in his capacity as Director of Focus Imaging and Research Center and his partner/Director Vinod Kumar Sharma met with the accused Sanjay Saxena. He was introduced to them by Prem Sharma – the maternal uncle of Sarin’s partner Vinod Kumar Sharma – as a big financier-cum-Gold & Diamond Merchant who besides being a jeweller also provided business loans/ finance to companies. During their first meeting he introduced himself as well connected with various overseas Banks and Financial institutions. He also told them about his company LD Group in which there are other partners also (Chander Shekar Bora), the accused Sanjay Saxena claimed himself to be the “karta dharta” (working partner) of the company and further claimed to be highly associated with Gold & diamond traders in India and majorly in Dubai. He also claimed that he owned properties in Delhi & Dubai, especially a hotel in Dubai. He assured them that he could arrange finances and fund/loan to the victims’ company – a sum of Rs.75 Crores at st s very low interest as he was having good connections with businessmen in Dubai who could route money through him on cheap lending rate of interest, they being his relatives and friends, based on international bank lending rates that are much cheaper than the Indian lending rates. The victims got induced and attracted by the proposal as the usual bank interest in India was much higher than what they were being offered by the accused person and they thought after negotiation it would be reduced even further.
They took Saxena’s offer as true, especially as he was introduced through Dr Sarin’s partner’s maternal uncle, who had even vouched for him.
Since the company Focus Imaging at that time was looking for funds for running the company, the Directors got carried away by the tall claims made by Saxena and his Dubai connection. So they decided to meet and discuss the modalities for the loan. The victim Directors were impressed by Saxena as he projectyed himself as a very big person and always moved around in luxury cars like mercedes, Audi, and Fortuner. His car was escorted by a black color fortuner full of bouncers and PSO/gunmen.
Initially, Saxena called the victims for a meeting at his house, which he claimed was his and was worth more than 100 Crores but later they found out that it was on lease and he was only a tenant. The aress of that property is 1/12, Shanti Niketan, New Delhi.
Saxena told the victims that he will be advancing aloan of Rs. 75,00,00,000 (Seventy Five Crores) to their company if they were ready to provide collateral security.
The first round of meeting took place at “Eros Hotel”, Nehru place, New Delhi which was organized by Prem Sharma. The meeting was in the month of first week of July 2018 and after several detailed meetings thereafter at venues like Le-Meridien, Royal Plaza Hotel, Hyatt Hotel Bikaji Cama Place and also his residence and the victims’ office, Saxena established his credibility.
Saxena used to call them for these meetings at 6 star hotels and every time he used to pay the hotel bills and in this way he was able to win the victims’ confidence.
In the meanwhile, Saxena started visiting the victims’ office/centre along with his other employees and associates, at at H-10, Green Park extension amd C-10, Green Park Extension in the capital, on the pretext of due diligence and for evaluating the machineries at the center, sales, balance sheets etc.In between, all of them also also met at the Jewellery showroom of the accused located at 14, Ground Floor, City Square Mall, Rajouri Garden in New Delhi. At the jewellery showroom he showed them a big safe/ vault stacked with plenty of gold and diamond jewellery. This lured the victims and made them believe that the accused was a wealthy person.
These meetings took place between the 1st and 10th July 2018 and the victims had no clue about the intensions of the accused.
In their complain, the victims told teh EOW that the accused, in collusion and conspiracy with other accused persons, told them that as soon as they would provide the necessary documents, the loan would be disbursed.
After several rounds of negotiations, it was decided that the accused person would advance the loan from his company LD Group to the victims’ company Focus Imaging and research Pvt Ltd. a sum of Rs.75,00.00.000.00 (Seventy Five Crores). The loan was to be advanced in two parts. In the first, the accused had to advance a sum of Rs.35,00,00,000.00 (Thirty Five Crores Only) as soon as the debtor company was to transfer the money in Saxena’s account for purchasing the stamp papers for the registration of Mortgage deed for the victims’ personal properties that were to be pledged to the accused, and in the second part the accused person had represented to fund the remaining Rs.40,00,00,000.00 (Forty Crores).
For collateral security the victims decided that for the first part of funding of Rs.35 Crores, the victims (Dr Sarin and Vinod Sharma) decided to pledge their Properties – N- 17 A Second Floor Green park Extension (which belongs to Dr Sarin) and B-184 Nirman Vihar First and Second floor (owned by partner Vinod Sharma). As these properties were mortgaged with HDFC Bank, the Saxena told the victims that they could get these properties released from the Bank after receiving the first part of the funding of Rs.35 Crores which he had promised to finance straightaway. He also asked them to bring a sheet detailing the loans they and as per that sheet, it was calculated that they had to pay HDFC Bank a sum of Rs. 29,26,04,289.00. At this juncture, saxena told the accused the the first part of teh loan could be advanced after the transfer of funds for the stamp paper for the registration of the mortgage deed/ property deed etc. by the victims.
In the second round of funding of Rs.40 Crores, it was decided to pledge 25% equity/shares of the Focus Imaging company with the accused company. This was valued at Rs. 40 Crores.
At this stage, pn 18 July 2018, the victims entered into an MOU with the accused person who asked them toprovide paper work for the sanction of the Loan which also had the counter signed photocopies of the victims’ respective properties. These documents were handed over to the accused at the time of execution of the MOU.
Saxena retained the MOU saying he is the financier and therefore he has to show the agreement to different people who are his partners/his family/financier in Dubai from where he was purportedly getting the funding from. He also portrayed that since the money was being routed majorly from Dubai and he would not be in a position to provide the original MoU to the them.
After the execution of the MOU, Saxena started calling the Directors of Focus Imaging and asking for small financial help on one pretext or the other and he was paid the money on different dates in cash.
Saxena also took from them an undated cheque No. 014287 drawn on HDFC BANK for Rs.75 Crores as security for the loan amount, 60 post dated cheques amounting to Rs. 33,75,000.00, each towards the interest @ 6% P.A. for the loan of Rs. 75 Crores, which he had represented that he would provide 60 cheques were issued towards 5 years EMI), Besides 2 Blank signed stamp papers for duplicate MoU,4 Plain A-4 size blank signed papers, 2 blank letter heads of company signed by the directors were also provided to the accused as security. These documents, along with the signed copies of pan cards and aadhar cards were also provided to Saxena after he gave the victims a post-dated cheque for Rs.35 Crores which was handed over soon after the execution of the agreement/MOU.
The accused also retained all the original board resolutions etc. and other paper work which he had asked the victims to bring on different occasions. At the time of execution of the MOU, it was further decided that the accused would be arranging Mortgage stamp papers/fees for the properties to be mortgaged as collateral security.
In the first week of August 2018, the victims generally called up Saxena to apprise him that they would be presenting the cheque given by him for Rs.35 Crores, drawn on ANDHRA BANK, MSME Bhilainagar, Near Apollo hospital, Chattisgarh-490029, he cooked up a story that all his personal and company bank accounts had been frozen by the IT (Income Tax) Department, and asked the victims to wait for some time before presenting the cheque. So they had option but to wait as by this time they had already altered their position and had taken loans from different sources to arrange for the funds that had already been transferred to the accused.
During the months that followed, on the pretext of his IT matter, the accused took further money from Focus Imaging between 13 Nvember 2018 and 12 April 2019, always assuring that everything will soon be fine and the transaction shall be consummated, for the money taken on the pretext of solving the IT department related problem. He also issued to the victims security cheques but at the same time told them that they were only security cheques and should not be presented to the bank as his accounts had been froze.
At this stage, Saxena arranged a meeting with the victims along with his CA/financial at Hyatt Hotel. Another associate of the accused, who also joined the meeting explained in detail what they projected as dispute with the IT department and the money that was purportedly to be deposited with the Income Tax department besides the bribe that was to be paid by them to the IT officers. They also showed them documents/notices from Income Tax department issued on different dates. They victims took those IT papers/notices as genuine and started paying the amount demanded by Saxena believing that as soon as the money is deposited with the IT department, his accounts would be unfrozen and they could then have the finance which he had promised.
On the pretext of the IT problem, the victims transferred a sum of Rs. 80 Lakhs, Rs.60 Lakhs, Rs. 10 Lakhs and Rs. 11 Lakhs by RTGS and cash of Rs. 39.50 Lakhs was handed over to the accused on different dates. Cash was given to “bribe” the Income Tax officers.
In this way a total sum of Rs. 4,25,50,000.00 (Four Crores Twenty Five Lakhs & Fifty Thousand) was taken by Saxena from the victims. On 3 October 2019, Saxena showed them a letter from the IT Department that everything has been sorted out and his accounts would soon be operational and he will consummate the transaction as promised in the MOU.
When nothing positive happened for the next few weeks it became clear that Saxena was bent upon fraud. When followed up repeatedly, he gave a fresh cheque of Rs.50 Lacs as part payment on 19 November 2019. When presented for clearing, this cheque bounced with the “insufficient funds” message.
When the victims contacted Saxena, he told the victims that he had arranged a sum of 11 crore from some “Desh Raj” group- and had deposited these cheques in his account and said that as soon as this amount gets credited, the victims would have their money with interest as per the MOU.
Subsequently, Saxena gave cheques for Rs.5.80 crore stating that this is the total amount covering the principle due and payable by him towards the amount which he had taken from the victims on account of the registration of mortgage deed and stamp papers etc. He also provided them two cheques for Rs. 75 Lakhs and 50 Lakh towards the return of the other amounts which he took on account of IT problems he was facing, along with interest and penalty etc
All these chaques have bounced due to insufficient funds. After these cheques bounced the victims ultimately realized that they have been conned and duped and when they told the accused that they won’t wait anymore and will have to explore legal options and avenues open to them, he immediately started visiting their office and spinning different stories to somehow delay the matter. It is now that the victims began recording their conversation with the accused to build their case against him. The audio-visual recordings that are now with the Police are like corroborative evidence.