The Enforcement Directorate announced on Saturday that it is raiding the Bengaluru offices of online payment gateways such as Razorpay, Paytm, and Cashfree as part of a continuing investigation into “illegal” immediate smartphone-based loans “managed” by Chinese individuals.
The searches began on Friday at six locations in Karnataka’s capital city, according to a statement.
The search is still ongoing, according to the Enforcement Directorate.
During the raids, the federal investigation agency said it confiscated Rs 17 crore in money held in “merchant IDs and bank accounts of these Chinese persons-controlled organisations.”
It is stated that these organisations employ fake Indian documents to create dummy directors, resulting in the development of “criminal profits.”
“These entities are controlled/operated by Chinese individuals,” the report stated.
“It was discovered that the aforementioned businesses were doing suspected/illegal activity using multiple merchant IDs/accounts held with payment gateways/banks.” “The search operation includes the premises of Razorpay Pvt Ltd, Cashfree Payments, Paytm Payment Services Ltd, and organisations controlled/operated by Chinese people,” the ED stated.
According to the agency, the entities under investigation were generating proceeds of crime through various merchant IDs/accounts held with payment gateways/banks, and they were also not operating from the addresses listed on the MCA (ministry of corporate affairs) website/registered address and had “fake” addresses.
According to the ED, its money laundering case is based on at least 18 FIRs filed by the Bengaluru Police cyber crime station against “numerous entities/persons in connection with their involvement in extortion and harassment of the public who had availed small amount of loans through the mobile apps run by those entities/persons.”