The matter came to light after Dr Michael Feiner, Consul General of German Consulate in Kolkata lodged a police complaint.
Kolkata: A top German diplomat became the target of an online fraud recently in which his email ID was allegedly forged to cheat a prospective car buyer.
The matter came to light after the victim, Dr Michael Feiner, Consul General of German Consulate in Kolkata lodged a complaint with the Kolkata Police.
As per preliminary investigation, a car buyer, Suneel Sheoran, came across an advertisement of a Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) of a foreign brand being sold. The ad mentioned the price quotation of the car as well as Dr Feiner's email ID in the SUV owner's profile.
Sheoran, who was interested in purchasing the car, wrote an email to Dr Feiner, sources revealed adding that in reply he was asked to come to 1 Hastings Park Road, Alipore which also happens to be the address of the Consulate General of Germany in Kolkata.
Sheoran was also advised to deposit around five per cent of the SUV's retail price to the bank account of Dr Feiner's personal secretary before visiting the address, sources added.
The clause also had a rider which claimed that the buyer's deposited money would be returned incase he/she changes his mind after taking a look at the car.
Sheoran went ahead and deposited the money. However, on arriving at the German Consulate, Sheoran was informed by officials that no such car is on sale. In fact, when Sheoran showed the officials the newspaper ad as well as the payment receipt, they too were taken aback.
Dr Feiner then lodged a complaint with the detective department (DD) of the city police. Later, the cyber crime cell of the DD took over the investigation. A case has also been initiated, a senior official said.
Preliminary investigations revealed that Dr Feiner's email ID was forged to publish the advertisement. The investigators, however, suspect the role of either an insider or someone known to Consul General as the SUV model, which was described in the advertisement with details, is used by Dr Feiner.