The Dhaka Metropolitan Police’s Counter-Terrorism and Transnational Crime Unit apprehended Turkish national Hakan Zanburkan in Bangladesh on Tuesday. Agartala’s Govind Ballabh Pant (GBP) Hospital and Agartala Government Medical College (AGMC) were able to eject Hakan’s captive with the aid of the local folks from Tripura.
Several other members of an international ATM card cloning syndicate were also arrested in Bangladesh alongside him on Thursday, according to a police officer at Agartala. Agartala’s AGMC and GBP Hospitals had allowed the under-trial Hakan to escape through a window during a health check-up while security lapses existed.
Several hundred Indian bank accounts were hacked, including the cloning of ATM cards of about 60 SBI customers in Tripura, which led to Zanburkan’s arrest in November 2019 in Belgharia in suburban Kolkata.
The other two suspects are nationals of Turkey and Bangladesh. In response to a report of large-scale hacking of bank accounts in Tripura, the Crime Branch of the Assam Police issued a lookout notice against Zanburkan. An Indian Police team from the Cyber Cell arrested four hackers in six Indian cities, including Agartala, who were responsible for stealing money from ATM accounts of private individuals.
These hackers reportedly withdrew crores of rupees from 1,788 bank accounts across the country. Compromising the security of different banks, about Rs 1.19 crore was looted from account holders of Tripura in two days.
Later in 2020, they were brought to Agartala 2020 and put in prison. In addition to the 17 clone cards seized, five mobile phones, and a laptop were taken from their possessions. The suspects have been caught trying to withdraw money at least 84 times at the booths of Eastern Bank Ltd of Bangladesh by cloning the credit cards of foreigners from 40 countries, including Australia, New Zealand, the USA, India, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Austria, Germany, Vietnam, United Kingdom, Canada, Bolivia, Spain, Finland and Norway from January 02 – 04 last.”
Through Sikkim, Zanburkan escaped from Tripura with the help of an Indian. After collecting his travel documents, he returned to Turkey in September last year. He had gone to Dhaka on December 31, 2022, and stayed in a hotel in the Gulshan area of Dhaka from where he was arrested by the Counter-Terrorism and Transnational Crime Unit of Dhaka Metropolitan Police.
Dr. BK Kilikdar and retired High Court judge Tripura Justice S C Das headed the inquiry’s commission investigating Zanburkan’s escape. 10 people are being interrogated by the Tripura Police as a result of this case. Sukhen Bhowmik and Badal Banik were arrested after police interrogated them. Later, police also arrested Sumit Banik, Omar Sharif, Fata Al Demir, Mohammad Hannan, Rakibul Islam, Swarna Kumar Tripura, and Mithun Bhowmik. Apart from Mithun, the other six accused are in a correctional home.