The Mumbai police, which arrested three Romanians for skimming, fears that it may not be able to recover the full amount of the stolen money, as they have found that the trio splurged huge amounts at pubs in Bandra.
The trio allegedly attached a skimmer to a Bandra-based ATM resulting in losses to at least 63 people who used it. Cops suspect that the accused spent anywhere between Rs 5-10 lakh from the stolen booty.
Soon after their arrest from a rented accommodation at Pali Naka in Bandra (west), police had found Rs 28,45,500 in cash. They peg the amount the trio made through skimming to be between Rs 35-40 lakh.
The accused reportedly attached a skimmer and a pin hole camera at a Union Bank of India ATM at Bandra West and copied the debit card details of nearly 63 people who used it.
The trio would transfer the stolen card details to dummy debit cards that they would use to withdraw cash from ATM’s across the city.
The police found that the trio-Allen Budoi (39), Marion Grama (42) and Miu Ionel (42)-had planned to purchase gold and diamonds using the stolen money which they could then take with them to Romania. The interrogation in itself has proved a challenge for police as only Allen, who hails from Craiova city in Romania, knows a smattering of English, while the other two cannot communicate in the language.
“We question Allen, who then translates the same to the other two accused. So far, they have been co-operating in the probe,” said police sub-inspector Ganesh Mohite from Vinoba Bhave Nagar police station. The police will also be writing to the Romanian consulate in India informing them about the arrests.
Ever since the arrest of the trio, several police stations including Kandivali, Dahisar, DB Marg and Agripada, and the cyber police station contacted VB Nagar police station asking for the CCTV footage on the basis of which they arrested them. Agripada sub inspector Manish Pathane said, “We want to compare the CCTV footage with clips that we extracted from an ATM under our jurisdiction.”
The VB Nagar police have their custody till October 13.