Law enforcers have identified several members of the "fraud squad" allegedly created by Regent Group Chairman Shahed Karim to run his fraudulent activities, and efforts are on to track them down.
The Detective Branch (DB) of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police unearthed more information about the squad after interrogating two of its members recently detained by the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB).
RAB detained Masud Parvez, managing director of the Regent group, from Gazipur area on July 14. Meanwhile, Torikul Islam alias Shiblee, an associate of Shahed, was detained from Dhaka's Nakhalpara area on July 8.
Shahed and his associates have been scamming people using various methods, and many of their victims are now submitting complaints to the RAB and the Detective Branch, sources said.
On Saturday midnight, DB officials conducted a drive at Shahed's Uttara residence in Dhaka.
"DB seized a pistol and a bullet, five bottles of foreign liquor and 10 bottles of Phensedyl from his car during the drive," said Kazi Shafiul Alam, deputy commissioner of Detective Branch's Uttara division.
DB seized Shahed's car from Uttara sector 11, which was parked in front of Design Sweater Ltd. Shahed had used this car to escape from Dhaka to Satkhira, said Nadia Farzana, an additional deputy commissioner of DMP media unit.
She added, "After the raid, two separate cases were filed against the fraudster with the DMP's Uttara (west) Police Station.
"Shahed and his associates rented two houses in the Pallabi area of the capital, but they never paid any rent. The landlords later filed cases over the matter. Besides, we are getting many other complaints against Shahed and his associates."
Meanwhile, the Anti-Corruption Commission has sent letters to four banks seeking information on eight accounts belonging to the Regent Group and Shahed. ACC Deputy Director Abu Bakar Siddique on Sunday sent these letters to Brac, Premier, Shajalal Islami and Uttara banks.
He also sent the letters to six police stations seeking documents of cases filed against him.
Lt Col Ashik Billah, director of RAB media wing, at a briefing on Sunday told journalists that Shahed did not pay salaries to his employees and many have filed complaints about it.
Responding to a question, he said, "Shahed would usually introduce himself as an important person, so that he can easily attract people and scam them. He is the textbook example of a fraudster, and has all the required characteristics."
On Wednesday, a RAB team detained Shahed from Satkhira.
Before that, on June 6, RAB raided the Uttara and Mirpur branches of Regent Hospital over allegations of conducting fake Covid-19 tests. They filed a case against 17 people, including Shahed, with Uttara West Police Station on June 7.
After primary interrogation, Detective Branch officials said Shahed had confessed to his involvement in fraudulent activities.