The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has carried out searches at offices of some leading payment gateways and private banks in Bengaluru to unearth more evidence in its “Super Like Online Earning Application” case. The case being dubbed as the part-time-job scam has been perpetrated by Chinese nationals in connivance with Indians.

During the search over two days from Monday, at 16 locations in Bengaluru, the ED said that around 80 bank accounts with a balance to the tune of ₹1 crore, belonging to the accused, have been freezed. The raids took place at payment gateways like Phonepay, Paytm, Googlepay and Amazonpay and banks including HDFC, ICICI and Dhanalakshmi Bank, said the ED.

The agency initiated an investigation on the basis of an FIR registered on March 3, 2021, by South CEN Police Station of Bengaluru against M/s Super Like Online Earning Application and other accused persons for money laundering.

An app called “Super Like” lured customers to share photos and videos of celebrities after investing some money, and in return they were promised good profit. “ Attracted to this scheme, the common public invested funds in the said app and upon sharing videos of celebrities they received some returns for a while,” said the agency in a statement.

However, as time passed, customers, even upon sharing videos and photos, stopped receiving payments. When they tried to retrieve their investment, the money was blocked by the said application, the ED explained. Thus, by cheating the common public, the accused collected a good deal of money but failed to make the promised returns. This amounted to indulging in criminal activities related to scheduled offence under Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), stated the agency.

The State police had filed a chargesheet on January 13 this year before the court of Principal City Civil and Sessions Judge in Bengaluru against 50 accused persons that included two Chinese nationals, Shen Long and Himani.