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Nigerian duo in Indian dock for 419 scam

- R. Krishna Das

( Monday, April 10, 2006 )

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[ According to Farishta, the visitors demonstrated how they could “convert” blank paper into dollar by using a “special” chemical. ]

Indian police arrested two Nigerian nationals allegedly involved in currency note racket. The duo was arrested from a city hotel last night while they were trying to dupe a local businessman. The accused, George Johnson and Julius, are learnt to have told the police that about a dozen "friends" from the African country were camping in Mumbai. "Chhattisgarh police are communicating the message to Mumbai police besides the Nigerian embassy and other agencies at the national level," city superintendent of police V.K. Choubey told The Telegraph. Sources said Johnson and Julius arrived in Raipur two days ago to finalise a deal with city hotelier Pappu Farishta, who had invited investments for a real estate project. The two men reportedly expressed their interest to invest $250,000 in Farishta's project. The youths won over Farishta with their “magic” to convert blank paper into American dollar.

According to Farishta, the visitors demonstrated how they could “convert” blank paper into dollar by using a “special” chemical. “The Nigerian youths put a real US dollar between two blank papers of same size with a coating of some black chemical. After that, they kept it in a refrigerator. On Thursday morning, when the papers were taken out, the two blank papers had the impression of the dollar,” Farishta said. Police, however, said the two blank papers were real dollars, which had been given a coating of some black chemical to misguide the city hotelier. “When the coating was removed, it came back to the real shape,” said a police official investigating the case.

Sensing trouble, Farishta informed the police, which raided the hotel and nabbed the two Nigerians. Farishta said he had come in touch with Johnson through the Net after he placed an advertisement in March inviting investments for his project. Five bundles of paper packed in aluminium foil, chemicals, cuttings of black paper in the size of US dollars, rubber gloves and masks were seized, sources in the police said.

Sources said Johnson and Julius asked Farishta to arrange $50,000 so that they could convert the bundles they were carrying into dollars. They said the bundles of blank papers and chemicals they were carrying were enough to “produce” $250,000. The two men were not carrying any travel documents or passports. They told the police during investigation that the documents had been submitted in the embassy. After registering a case under Section 420 of the Indian Penal Code, the accused were produced in court from where they were sent to jail.

The two Nigerians in custody.
Photo Above:- The two Nigerians in custody.

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