Eighteen police officers in Noida Police’s Special Operations Group were transferred on Friday after they were reportedly caught discussing ways to bribe three businesspersons. The officers were allegedly found out after their WhatsApp messages got leaked.

“An inquiry has been initiated in connection with the matter,” said Noida Senior Superintendent of Police Ajay Pal Sharma. “Till then, the Special Operations Group in Noida has been dissolved and the officers have been sent to the district lines.” The Special Operations Group is part of the Crime Branch, and operates under the direct supervision of Sharma.

In the leaked messages, the officials allegedly discussed the pretext to levy money from the businesspersons, and how it should be shared.