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EOW seeks I-T department help in Limo fraud case

The economic offences wing (EOW) of the city police has written to the income tax department (I-T) and Serious Fraud Investigation Office

(SFIO) to probe into the accounts of the tainted investment firm City Limouzines and its sister concern City Realcom. However, both I-T and SFIO are yet to coordinate with the EOW, a source said.

The companies are currently being investigated by the EOW on charges of cheating after it failed to repay investors their interest since August. The company had offered 48% returns on the investments.

A police officer said the extent of the scam is not clear as the company has not submitted the required documents. "We expect at least 1.5 lakh people across the country to have invested. This takes the amount involved into crores of rupees. It is also not clear as to what the firm did with the money collected,'' the officer said.

Earlier too, the I-T department had initiated a probe after the firm's profits declared shot up every year exponentially though the business module was not a viable one. However, the probe did not reach anywhere, sources said. An I-T official said there are discrepancies in the functioning of the company in relation to the accounts but refused to elaborate.

The SFIO, set up under the ministry of corporate affairs, has power to carry out a special audit though it can't initiate criminal proceedings. After the investigations, it submits a report to the Centre. In 2007 too, after the first FIR was registered, the police had asked the SFIO to carry out a special audit but it did not happen.

Meanwhile, the office of the registrar of cooperative societies has written to the city collector, seeking assistance in getting the audit reports of the City Cooperative Credit Society. An official said they had sought the reports from the society but it refused. Several of the investment schemes promoted by the company was routed through the credit society.

Source: TOI


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