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ED cracks down on illegal online satta matka betting, attaches assets worth Rs. 8.89 crore

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In a move against illegal online satta matka betting, the Directorate of Enforcement (ED) has provisionally attached movable and immovable properties valued at approximately Rs. 8.89 Crore under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002. The attached properties include 10 immovable properties and 5 bank accounts linked to various accused persons, notably the mastermind, Lokesh Verma alias Raja Verma.

The ED’s investigation was initiated based on an FIR and Chargesheet filed by the Madhya Pradesh Police, covering offences under different sections of the IPC, 1860, and the Public Gambling Act, 1867. The probe revealed the operation of illegal online betting apps, such as Dhangames, and other Satta Matka apps in Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, and other parts of the country, targeting unsuspecting individuals. These apps allowed users to register through mobile numbers, transfer money to Dhangames wallets via UPI, and engage in betting activities.

The modus operandi involved laundering illegal funds generated through these Satta Matka apps, using a complex network of bogus bank accounts. Lokesh Verma, working in collusion with others, reportedly amassed proceeds of crime amounting to approximately Rs. 25 Crore from these illicit betting operations.

The attached assets, including properties and bank accounts, were traced to the accused individuals in the organised online betting racket. The ED’s decisive action highlights the ongoing efforts to curb illegal gambling activities and money laundering in the online gaming sector. The investigation is ongoing as authorities aim to unravel the full extent of the illicit operations and bring those responsible to justice.

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