In a massive crackdown on part-time job firms run by Chinese citizens, the Enforcement Directorate on Monday seized over Rs 5 crore during raids at 12 job-providing entities in Bengaluru in an alleged money laundering case.
Six citizens of China and Taiwan controlled the job entities, said the federal probe agency, which named 92 people as accused in the alleged job scam.
ED has conducted search actions on the 12 entities involved in Part time job fraud case located in Bengaluru and seized Rs.5.85 Crore so far under PMLA, 2002.— ED (@dir_ed) October 3, 2022
During the raids on the 12 companies yesterday, Rs 5.85 crore was seized under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
The Chinese citizens cheated people seeking jobs through an app and transferred the money collected through it to China-based crypto exchanges, the ED said in a release.
The scam worth crores came to light after the ED launched a money laundering investigation on the basis of a case registered related to part-time job fraud.
In these Chinese-run firms, locals were hired as human resource (HR) managers, directors, and telecallers, the ED revealed. They launched an app, 'Keepsharer', which was linked to another investment app. It was available on PlayStore.
Job-seekers had to deposit an amount for registration. They were also asked to deposit more money for alleged investments.
The victims, who were tasked with liking videos of celebrities and uploading them on social media, were paid Rs 20 per video and the amount was credited to their app wallet. This continued until the app was removed from PlayStore, said the ED.
The accused converted the money they had collected into cryptocurrency and transferred them to crypto exchanges based in China, it said.
"All transactions were under the control of Chinese persons through phone and WhatsApp groups. Of the 92 accused, six are citizens of China and Taiwan, who were controlling the entire scam," the ED said.