Central Warehousing Corporation’s former top official arrested

The Economic Offences Wing of the Delhi Police has arrested a top retired government official for cheating and misappropriation to the tune of approximately Rs 30 crore, a senior Delhi Police officer said on Wednesday.

The accused, identified as Ajay Khera, retired from the post of Executive Director (Commercial) from Central Warehousing Corporation.

Furnishing details, Special Commissioner of Police, Ravinder Kumar Yadav said the complainant in this case is the Director of Seagull Maritime Agencies Pvt. Ltd. which deals in freight forwarding business in India and had started a branch in US in 2010.

“The accused (Ex-employee of Group Company) who was working with the company as legal consultant, requested the ex-promoters of Seagull to employ his son alleged Siddharth Khera to look after the US branch of Seagull,” the Special CP said.

Accordingly, alleged Siddharth Khera was appointed as Business Development Manager at the US branch of Seagull. However, it was noticed that the revenue per annum of Seagull declined steadily from the highs of 2018 to the severe low in July, 2021.

“It was revealed that alleged persons had incorporated two companies namely Azure Freight & Logistics LLP (November 2020) and Azure International LLC (June 2020) and started parallel business by taking away clientele of Seagull through misrepresentation & forgery,” the senior official said.

According to the police, the accused persons in connivance with the employees of Seagull forged Bills of Lading, invoices etc, and dishonestly funneled payments made by the client of Seagull for shipments made by Seagull to the accounts of Azure International LLC.

The police said the accused also made wrong representations to Seagull clients that Azure is one of the group companies of Seagull and obtained orders from Seagull clients.

They even changed the name of the shipper in the bills of landing from Seagull to Azure in spite of the obligations for such order being performed by Seagull. While resigning, the alleged persons also replaced the original hard drives of their computers.

“The accused caused a wrongful loss of Rs 30 crore or more to the complainant company and wrongful gain to themselves,” the official said.

Accordingly, after preliminary enquiry, the police registered an FIR under several relevant sections of law Economic Offence Wing police station.

A team, headed by Joint C.P. Chhaya Sharma, was constituted which arrested the accused Khera and took him in police custody on September 22.

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