Bengaluru: The Yelahanka Police on Friday (May 3) arrested three persons including Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) bus driver and conductor involved in printing fake currency worth more than Rs 83 lakh.

The main accused BMTC driver-cum-conductor Somangouda A, with the help of a colleague and a friend, was printing counterfeit currency in a rented house in Garvebhavipalya, near Madiwala in southeast Bengaluru.

Police had earlier busted a racket by arresting three men in possession of Rs 50 lakh in fake notes on April 26. Somangouda (30) resides in Bandepalya and belongs to Raichur. Kirankumar (24), a photographer and Nanjegouda (32), a bus driver, live in T Dasarahalli.

Preliminary police investigation led to the discovery that Somangouda was the mastermind in the plot. He had learned to make fake currency notes from a Chitradurga man who had previously given him fake notes. Somangouda later sold his property, gave the Chitradurga man Rs 7.5 lakh in real currency and demanded him to double the amount and give it to him as fake notes.

Police have stated that Somangouda had taken a house on rent in Garvebhavipalya and converted it into a fake currency printing unit. Ganging up with his colleague Nanjegouda and Kirankumar, the trio used a scanner, printer and computer to print fake notes.

On raiding the printing unit, police seized the equipment as well as Rs 33 lakh currency in Rs 2,000 and Rs 500 denominations.

According to Kala Krishnaswamy, deputy commissioner of police (northeast), the gang had been involved in making fake notes for three months. They were planning to meet and exchange the notes through known people.

The accused, however, claimed that they were caught in their first try at exchanging fake notes.