As a part of the ongoing drive against fake invoices, multiple searches were conducted by the officers of DGGI, Nashik Regional Unit of Nagpur Zonal Unit at a number of business premises and residential premises across Maharashtra. During the investigations, a number of entities which had obtained GST Registrations were found to be non-existent and it was observed that they had been floated exclusively for the purpose of engaging in fake GST transactions. The interrogations of the persons apprehended during the investigations revealed that a mastermind based in Jalgaon was behind the racket who had obtained the PAN numbers and Bank details of the persons to float these dummy entities and whose mobile number and email ID were used to register these fake entities.
The location of the mastermind was pinpointed with the help of informers and the search of the residential premises of the mastermind led to the unearthing of incriminating documents pertaining to various non-existent entities floated in the name of distant relatives of the mastermind. While a number of documents had been burnt by the mastermind, which was confessed by him during his interrogation, a large number of incriminating documents could be resumed. Further interrogation of the mastermind revealed that apart from one fake firm of which the mastermind himself was the Proprietor, there were 17 other fake entities floated by him by obtaining GST registrations at Mumbai, Pune and Jalgaon.
These 18 fake firms were found to have engaged in fake transactions of almost Rs. 500 Crore without supply or receipt of any goods or services and had availed fraudulent Input Tax Credit of app. Rs 46.50 Crores. For causing to commit and retaining the benefits arising out of offences specified under clause (b) and (c) of sub-Section (1) of Section 132 of the CGST Act, 2017 by way of setting up 18 fake and non-existent firms, including his own firm where he was the Proprietor, the mastermind was arrested on March 5, 2021 and was remanded to judicial custody till March 19, 2021.