Internet money launderer gets 8 years
A student from the University of the South Pacific was yesterday jailed for eight years for three counts of money laundering through internet banking.
Rajneel Chaudary, 27, pleaded guilty to the offence.
Suva Magistrate Shageeth Somaratne said: “This was the first internet bank fraud in this country.
“You used internet banking to transfer funds from various BSP accounts to your account and also to your friend’s account without the consent of lawful account holders.
“Wider implications of your offending to the society cannot be ignored by this court and this has not only compromised the security of banks, but also the confidence of the general public to the financial institutions.
“Even though the victims were restituted by the bank, it has to suffer substantial loss because of your action.”
Magistrate Somaratne mentioned that Chaudary had a bright future which he had tarnished.
“Being a USP student who is completing the Bachelor of Commerce, you had a bright future, but it appears that you used your knowledge to this criminal enterprise.
“Hence the sentence passed on this case would need to reflect the disapproval of your behaviour as well as to deter people from committing these offences in future,” Mr Somaratne said.
In September 2013 it is alleged that the first accused who is also charged for money laundering, took bank details of Sat Narayan and registered him to internet banking without his knowledge.
It was also alleged that he through the internet banking platform transferred $9,500 from his account and transferred it to Chaudary’s account as well as another girl’s accounts whose ATM card was in his possession.
Between December 5, 2013 and December 15, 2013, the accused allegedly received a total of $4500.00 from Sat Narayan’s bank account. The $4500.00 was obtained through unauthorised withdrawals fraudulently done through the internet banking platform.
Between December 5, 2013 to December 15, 2013, Arti Singh’s bank account received a total of $6000 from Sat Narayan’s bank account. The $6000 was unauthorised withdrawals fraudulently done by the internet banking platform.
At the time of the withdrawals, Arti Singh had been asked by the first accused to give her ATM card to him.
Between December 19, 2013 and December 21, 2013, there was an unauthorised transfer made from Deo Chand’s account of $4440 through the internet banking platform.
It is alleged that the accused had registered Deo to the Internet banking platform without his knowledge.
Chaudary has admitted that they had done unauthorised money transfers from peoples’ accounts without their knowledge and admitted that it was transferred to his account as well as Singh’s account for which the ATM card was with the first accused.
The aggravating factors:
“You planned these offences through electronic fraud. This was well planned by you and used your friend account to conceal your activities,” Magistrate Somaratne said.
“You used your friend, Arti Dharshana Reddy’s account for some of these transactions. She trusted you and gave her ATM card and access to her account which you used for this criminal enterprise. By doing these you breached her trust.
The non-parole period is six years.
Edited by Jonathan Bryce