The victim reportedly transferred about $41,600 but soon found out that the object was useless. The man raised the alarm with the police who arrested two suspects last Sunday. A third is still being sought.
The gullible dupe, Laeek Khan, stated that he met the scammers while caring for a ‘sick woman’ in Uttar Pradesh state for a month in India. During these visits, he came into contact with two men who claimed to be relatives of the patient.
They would have convinced the doctor that they were in possession of a magic lamp. According to them, this lamp was a guarantee for ‘wealth and good health’.
The men assured the doctor that they could make him a billionaire and invited him to see the mysterious object with his own eyes, the man said.
Information from the police shows that the Indian men went pretty far in their manipulation. For example, they had prepared an entire ritual in which they pretended to pull a ghost from the lamp with their own hands, referring to Aladdin’s famous story.
The self-proclaimed doctor stated that he would have seen the ghost with his own eyes, only later realized that it was one of the suspects who had disguised himself. According to BBC News , the men asked for more than $200,000 for the lamp but eventually settled for a down payment of about $41,600.
In his report, the doctor stated that he was not himself when he made the payment. “The men began to tell me about a ghost they claimed had visited their home. They started brainwashing me and asked me to meet this ghost,” the Indian TV channel New Delhi Television Limited cites the statement. He then met the ghost – in reality, the suspect – who “seemed to perform such rituals.”
The doctor was urged not to use the lamp for the first six months. Otherwise, the ghost would destroy his family, a senior police officer told Indian media. According to the same official, the men are suspected of defrauding other families in a similar way. They were difficult to trace because they did not have a permanent place of residence or office.
The Indian police are still looking for the supposedly sick woman, who is believed to have been involved in the plot all along. The ‘magic lamp’ has been confiscated along with the stone that was used to rub it. “As long as people are driven by greed, such cases will continue to occur,” police said.