Abductors demand bitcoin as ransom money!

Abductors go high-tech, and so do Guwahati police.
Abductors demand bitcoin as ransom money!


GUWAHATI: Abductors go high-tech, and so do Guwahati police. The police busted an abductors' gang that demanded bitcoin, not cash, as ransom.

Bitcoin (BTC) is a cryptocurrency, a virtual currency designed to act as money and a form of payment outside the control of any one person, group, or entity, thus removing the need for third-party involvement in financial transactions.

The gang abducted Ankur Surana, son of businessman Manoj Surana of the Bharalukukh area, and held him, hostage.

Commissioner of Police, Guwahati, Diganta Borah, informed the media today that Manoj Surana had complained to the Bharalumukh Police Station that his son Ankur Surana had not returned home after going out on the night of February 1. "On February 2, Ankur Surana's sister staying in Mumbai received a call from an unknown caller through the internet. The caller informed her that her brother was with them. The caller demanded the deposition of an amount online through a link that he gave her the next morning for the safe release of her brother. On February 3, the caller sent a link to a wallet along with a QR Code demanding to transfer 104 BTC (bitcoins) to ensure the safe release of her brother," the Commissioner of Police said.

According to the Commissioner of Police, 104 BTC is equivalent to over Rs 19 crore. A team of Guwahati West District Police started an investigation into the case. The investigators used pressure tactics — technically and conventionally — in some probable locations where the abductors might have held Surana, hostage. The pressure compelled the abductors to set Surana free near Amching Tea Estate on February 4. Surana's body bears injury marks.

During the investigation, it came to light that one of Surana's friends among the abductors had lured him to a party at a resort – PRP Valley – at Amching. When Surana was on his way to the party on the night of February 1, the gang abducted and kept him confined in a room.

The police arrested five members of the gang. They are Rupam Das of Amching Jorabat and the manager of PK Eco Retreat Resort; Rajen Kaimal of Amching Jorabat and cashier of the resort; Azahar Choudhury of Baihata, who was working at PK Hardware, Amching; Haren Das of Amching Jorabat, lessee of the pond at PK Eco Retreat Resort and Gautam Das of Amching Jorabat. Three or four members of the gang have been absconding.

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Sentinel Assam