The companies used the name of US-based famous crypto expert Balaji Srinivasan and launched ‘HPZ Token’, a cryptocurrency, to dupe thousands across the country by collecting crores of rupees.
Investigations on the ground have revealed that a shell firm, Abhayahasta Information Services, which has no office in the registered address, received a huge chunk of Rs 42 crore of scam money into its account.
The scamsters collected money from thousands of individuals assuring that their money would be used for mining HPZ Token.
It is alleged that Delhi-based Lillian Technocab Private Limited and Shigoo Technology Private Ltd collected deposits from investors in the name of HPZ Token.
After collecting the money, the website, www.hpztoken.com, and the app were shut down. TOI made use of Wayback Machine (a digital archive of the World Wide Web) and retrieved the pages of HPZ Token which used the name and photograph of Srinivasan and asked people to invest money. HPZ Token website also falsely claimed that it was associated with American bitcoin mining company, 21 Inc.
When gullible depositors began tagging Srinivasan in August 2021 stating that they had lost their money, he replied on Twitter asserting that he had nothing to do with HPZ Token.
Investigations have revealed that Lillian Technocab was operating HPZ Token. Investigations also revealed that Abhayahastha was involved in a series of money transactions with Lillian Technocab. 41.3 crore was debited and taken out from Lillian Technocab in which Abhayhastha was a major creditor. 49.5 crore was debited between April and November last year into the account of Shigoo Technology. Abhahastha had debited 1.2 crore into this account..
Abhayahasta cropped up in December last year in an FIR registered against 12 firms linked to Adabala Srinivasa Rao along with others who allegedly connived with Chinese nationals and collected money in name of online investments.
When TOI visited the address of Abhayahasta Foundation in Padmaraonagar, it was found that there was no such company existing and it was a residential house of Dharma Reddy. His wife said: “No such company exists here.” Ministry of corporate affairs records show that Ajay Babu Kakarala and Veerabattula Sirisha are company directors. Interestingly, mail ID of the company – firstname.lastname@example.org – is connected to Chinese-linked firms which are in the dock.When checked online, Lillian Technocab is still running an online rummy website.
Mithilesh of Setyourbiz said: “I received a query from Gujarat cybercrime cell.” It was revealed that Delhi and Gurugram-based firms were incorporated with help of company secretary Rajni Kohli.