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Sports Fantasy Game “SF11” company director denied bail in the case against the company for misappropriating investors money and criminal breach of trust :Tripura High Court

The Tripura High Court denied bail to the director of Sports Fantasy game SF11 in the case of Miss Anchal @ Rinki vs The State Of Tripura (B.A. No. 12 of 2022) for misappropriating investors’ money and criminal breach of trust. 

Facts of the case: Sri Titas Kumar Saha lodged a written FIR alleging, inter alia, that from internet he came to be acquainted with “SF11” propagated to be an online sports fantasy game and as per terms and conditions of the same he registered his name in the website of the company namely MYSF Technologies Pvt. Ltd. The accused petitioner was one of the Directors of that company along with Samudhra Sing Kumawat.  After registering his name in the website of the company viz. Url.www.sportsfantasy11.com, the informant bought a package of Rs.11,000/- for playing the online fantasy game. The company of the accused also shared with the informant the details of his investment and benefits to be earned by him. According to the informant, among the various benefits provided by the company, the investors were entitled to retention points income after deduction of TDS. He, therefore, kept investing money with the company of the accused. He received returns as per his entitlement till 05.09.2020. Thereafter, the company suddenly stopped depositing his retention point income/referral income into his user account from 08.09.2020. 

It had been alleged by the informant that having been dishonestly induced by the said company, he invested a total sum of Rs.2,50,000/- and received return of only Rs.75,000/-. No benefit was given to him for the rest of the amount invested by him. Thus, he felt cheated by the company

FIR under section 420 IPC was registered and the investigation of the case was taken up by police. The accused was arrested by police during investigation of the case when she was about to abscond from the Country and she was remanded to custody after rejecting her bail application. Thereafter several bail applications of the accused were rejected by the Court.

Judgment: Counsel for the accused contended that the accused did not compel the informant to participate in the fantasy game. He voluntarily participated in the online game after paying an online membership fee. Counsel had contended that “SF11” has no difference with the sports fantasy called “Dream 11”.

Police has collected the bank details of the accused and that of her company and also collected the statements of their accounts which have revealed that the accused individually and her company have accumulated crores of money by cheating the people in the guise of online sports fantasy.

The court held that the accused petitioner used to collect money from depositors alluring them with higher returns in the name of online sports fantasy. In the given facts and circumstances of the case, the petitioner that it was an online sports fantasy like “Dream 11” does not gain ground. 

The court was of the opinion the conduct of the accused who avoided several notices issued under section 41A Cr.P.C, the reasonable possibility of securing her presence at the trial, reasonable apprehension of the evidence and the witnesses being tempered with, the interest of the depositors and the larger interest of public, the accused petitioner does not deserve bail at this stage.

JUDGMENT REVIEWED BY : SHUBHANGI CHAUDHARY

Click here to view the judgment

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