Police warn of scammers selling fake gold

Kathmandu, January 8

Police arrested Tashi Sherpa, 35, of Solukhumbu district with one kilogram fake gold from Budhanilkantha on Saturday. He allegedly had defrauded a woman of Rs 370,000.

According to Metropolitan Police Range, Kathmandu, the 27-year-old woman (name undisclosed) gave Lama the amount in advance for the purchase of ‘one kilogram gold’ at Rs 3.5 million — over Rs 1.5 million cheaper than the market price. On December 1, police arrested a gang of six persons from various places of Kathmandu for duping unwary persons of cash. The gang fled with four million rupees by giving the victim one kilogram fake gold.

Senior Superintendent of Police Basant Lama said jewellers topped the chart of victims falling prey to fraudsters. “Fraud rackets usually target moneyed persons. Jewellers are more vulnerable to fraudsters due to the greed of making ‘big profit’,” he warned.

However, businesspersons rarely file complaints with police as buying ‘gold’ without invoice is illegal. “In most cases, we rely on police intelligence to arrest the fraudsters,” SSP Lama said. According to police, over 15 cases of trading in fake gold were reported in the past one year in Kathmandu, an increase of around 50 per cent compared to the previous year.

Fraudsters use gold-plated metal bars to dupe the victims. They show the prospective buyers a small piece of genuine gold as a sample before the agreement. Police have appealed to all to purchase gold with invoice only from the authorised jewellers and dealers. Even fake gold is   smuggled into Nepal from China, police investigation shows. Police said plainclothes cops were mobilised in the guise of customers to catch fraudsters.