Two court convictions for India-based robocall scam • The Register


Two Indian nationals were each sentenced to 41 months in prison for their involvement in scams worth $1.2 million targeting the elderly, according to the New Jersey District Attorney’s Office on Tuesday.

Plaintiffs Arushobike Mitra and Garbita Mitra (no relation, just a coincidence) both previously pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud before receiving their sentences in Newark federal court .

In addition to time served, they were ordered to pay $835,324 in restitution and undergo three years of supervised release.

The duo were US residents and allegedly is part of a larger network in which India-based call centers used automated calls to contact U.S. residents. After establishing contact, fellow criminals would trick victims into sending large sums of money via physical mailings or wire transfers to members of the network.

Some of the tactics allegedly employed by the duo and their team included impersonating representatives of law enforcement or government agencies like the Social Security Administration and threatening legal or financial consequences if the victim did not comply with their requests. The scammers also posed as technical support to trick the victim into giving them remote access to their computers and even their bank accounts.

The Mitras themselves acted as money mules, individuals who collected and transferred shipments of cash for a share, in Florida and New Jersey, according to the U.S. District Court of New Jersey (PDF). They allegedly opened bank accounts in both states between May and November 2019 to receive payments. The court determined that a total of 48 victims transferred money ranging from $9,500 to $50,000 each to make up the $1.2 million.

The FCC has set out to combat both automated calls And robot texts.

According to a call blocking company Robot KillerThe number of robocalls received by Americans has been on a downward trend overall, having reached approximately 7.46 billion in October 2022 and decreasing to 5.67 billion last month.

However, even if the nuisance is decreasing, the company predicted (PDF) that losses due to fraudulent robocalls in 2023 are expected to total a value close to that of 2022, or $65 billion. ®

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