Former world billiards champion Michael Ferreira and three others have been arrested by Hyderabad Police in connection with an FIR registered against them here in the alleged multi-crore rupee fraud involving the multi-level marketing company QNet. The Central Crime Station (CCS), a wing of Hyderabad Police, has made a breakthrough in a case of cheating which involved QNet and its Indian subsidiary M/s Vihaan Direct Selling India Pvt Ltd, by arresting four directors of Vihaan, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Detective Department) Avinash Mohanty told reporters here. Michael Joseph Ferreira (78), Malcom N Desai, M V Balaji and Srinivas Rao, all directors and shareholders of Vihaan Direct Selling India Pvt Ltd who were earlier arrested in Mumbai by Maharashtra Police, have been brought to city on PT (production transit) warrants and arrested, the DCP said. On October 13 last year, a complaint was lodged by one Suman Ghosh, an assistant manager in a private bank here, wherein he stated that he paid Rs 16 lakh (via DD) in the name of Vihaan Direct Selling India Pvt Ltd, on the promise of getting business.
But, they did not give him any business despite collecting the amount.
Based on the complaint, a case under sections 406 (criminal breach of trust) and 420 (cheating) of IPC, besides relevant sections of Prize, Chits and Money Circulation Schemes (Banning) Act, Mohanty said.
He said during the course of investigation into the case registered here, on October 8 (this year) they received an information from the EOW wing of Mumbai Police that the four accused persons, who are directors of Vihaan Direct Selling India Pvt Ltd, were arrested and remanded in judicial custody.
Subsequently, Hyderabad Police filed an application at a court in Mumbai seeking their custody in connection with the case registered by them.
The Mumbai court then granted transit remand and the Hyderabad Police took Padma Bhushan recipient Ferreira and three others into custody and brought them to the city late last night.
It has come to light that several cases have been registered against QNet and its earlier companies in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Delhi and Telangana states, Mohanty said. Ferreira is a director of the accused company Vihaan Direct Selling India Pvt Ltd, which is a master franchise of M/s QNet in India. The four accused will be produced in a local court and police will file a petition seeking their custody for further interrogation, the DCP said. Police is also probing into the allegations that QNet cheated unemployed persons and software engineers on the pretext of providing employment and business, he added. Around 60 complaints have been received in the city against the company, police said.