09262017Headline:

Indian police arrest more than 700 people over IRS phone scams

Police in western India have detained more than 700 people who are suspected of working at call centers that defrauded U.S. citizens by posing as officials from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

At least 70 people have been formally arrested by police, while the rest have been released pending further investigation, according to authorities in Tahne in the western state of Maharashtra.

The raid was carried out by over 200 police officers late Tuesday night and continued into early Wednesday morning. Policemen raided three buildings, all in different locations across the city.

The employees of the call centers are accused of using lists of American tax defaulters and threatening them with dire consequences such as legal action in order to obtain their bank details, according to local newspaper The Indian Express.

After getting ahold of their bank details, the call center employees would siphon off the money from their accounts, according to police. The turnover of the dealings are estimated to be more than $150,000.

About 850 hard disks, high-end servers and other electronic equipment was seized from the call center locations, Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh told the BBC. He added that there could be other call centers out there which are engaging in questionable activity.

India is known for being a home for call center businesses that are a part of the country’s outsourcing industry, which employs millions of people. The operators at these industries will typically help callers with multiple things from banking to setting up computers.

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