Nepal | June 01, 2020

Man cheated of Rs 455,000 by Facebook pal

Himalayan News Service
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  • Swindled man sent the amount to his Facebook pal for the treatment of his virtual friend

Kathmandu, June 26

Police have arrested a woman for allegedly swindling a youth of hefty cash on the pretext of getting the victim a beautiful bride.

According to Metropolitan Police Crime Division, Kalpana Basnet, 23, was traced and taken into custody by plainclothes cops on Sunday. Basnet, who hails from Shailung Rural Municipality-5 of Dolakha district, was residing in Balkot, Bhaktapur.

Basnet befriended Hari Bahadur Karki, 24, on Facebook a few months ago. Though Basnet and Karki never met each other until this case came to the fore, they used to chat for hours on messenger and talk on phone, almost every day. As Basnet knew about  Karki’s financial status, she created  a fake Facebook account in the name of Sangita, with profile picture of a beautiful woman. She then posing as Sangita, sent a friend request to him. Karki accepted the friend request. One day, Basnet told Karki, who also hails from Dolakha, that Sangita was a beautiful woman and she knew her very well. “Sangita became a topic of their telephonic conversation for many days. One day Basnet asked Karki if he was interested in marrying Sangita and Karki’s response was positive,” a police official said. Karki was already in love with his virtual friend, Sangita. After a few weeks, Basnet informed Karki that Sangita was critically injured in a road accident, and had to be rushed to New Delhi for treatment. She also requested him to provide some money for her treatment. Saddened by the news, Karki decided to provide money to Sangita through Basnet.

He sent Rs 455,000 in installment to Basnet via wire for Sangita’s treatment. “After receiving the cash, she told Karki that Sangita died while undergoing treatment,” according to the police officer. Suspicious about Basnet’s conduct, Karki lodged a complaint with the MPCD to probe into the incident and identify Kalpana. Police investigation established Basnet as a Facebook scammer and arrested her.

She has been handed over to Metropolitan Police Range for legal action under cyber crime and fraud. Police have not disclosed further details about Basnet and Karki.

Cheating, blackmailing, phishing, identity theft, hacking, spreading hatred and inciting violence, circulating lewd photos and videos and grooming are major forms of cybercrime often reported to the law enforcement agency. Any person involved in cybercrime is liable to Rs 100,000 in fine or five years in jail or both, as per the Electronic Transactions Act.

Police have appealed to social media users not to accept friend requests from strangers.

Accepting strangers not only gives way to the risk of identity theft, but also puts unsuspecting persons at the risk of being cheated.


A version of this article appears in print on June 27, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.

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