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All-new ‘Amazon’ refund scam by a former Amazon employee has been reported in India. The elaborate scheme involved a Bengaluru-based engineering student who ingeniously exploited Amazon’s system. This student, Chirag Gupta, ordered four iPhones collectively valued at over Rs 3.7 lakh from Amazon India. However, Gupta’s modus operandi went beyond mere purchases – he cunningly raised return requests for all four iPhones, successfully receiving full refunds without returning any of the devices.

The fraudulent plot took a twist as the ex-Amazon employee manipulated internal systems, altering the refund status to indicate that the iPhones had been returned and verified. Suspicion was aroused when officials from Amazon Transportation Services Private Limited detected the peculiar purchasing pattern. H D Paramesh, a zonal manager, filed a police complaint after observing Gupta’s unusual transaction behaviour.

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Indore-based engineering student Chirag Gupta executed his deceptive plan between May 15 and May 17. He acquired iPhone 14 series models, including an iPhone 14 Pro Max, through credit card and UPI payments, amounting to Rs 3.7 lakh. An internal investigation conducted by Amazon disclosed that all four iPhones were indeed dispatched to Gupta from a delivery center in Peenya. Shockingly, despite Gupta not returning any iPhones, the products were falsely marked as returned within Amazon’s system, leading to the issuance of full refunds.

The fraudulence came to light when H D Paramesh recognized a recurrent pattern of multiple products being ordered from a single address and not returned post-refund. Acting upon Amazon’s complaint, Bangalore police apprehended Chirag Gupta from his north Bangalore residence on May 26. Subsequent investigations unveiled Gupta’s association with an ex-Amazon employee from Madhya Pradesh, who orchestrated the scam via Telegram.

Ongoing Investigation and Legal Action

While Gupta was released on station bail, his 12 associates have been issued notices to report to the police. Bangalore police confiscated an array of items worth over Rs 20 lakh, including two MacBooks, 16 iPhones, electronic devices, and other purchases made by Gupta and his friends. In addition, bank accounts containing Rs 30 lakh have been frozen.

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