A two-time national gold medallist in taekwondo was arrested from the Vikaspuri market area for his alleged involvement in five cases of vehicle theft and mobile snatching in the city.
Police said the accused, Suraj (26), alias Fighter, who was arrested Wednesday, allegedly turned to a life of crime “to support a lavish lifestyle”.
Officers have recovered a country-made pistol, a stolen motorcycle and two high-end mobile phones from his possession.
According to police, Suraj is a history-sheeter with more than 30 criminal cases registered against him, including a number of phone snatching incidents in Vikaspuri.
He was one of the top 50 contestants in a reality TV singing show previously, said an officer.
“He was spotted on a bike and was signaled to stop but instead, he sped and tried to flee. He was apprehended after a short chase,” said Monika Bhardwaj, DCP (West).
Suraj was traced after police nabbed one of his accomplices, Rahul, while investigating cases of mobile snatching from the last two months, officers said.
Police said Suraj had recently been released from Tihar jail and had allegedly started snatching mobile phones again. He was previously arrested in 2014 by officers from Janakpuri police station and 49 mobile phones were recovered from him.
“He had a lavish lifestyle with no permanent means of income and no desire to work. He had to find a way to sustain the life he was living so he resorted to this. He is also well educated and graduated from Sri Aurobindo College of Delhi University,” said an officer of Vikaspuri police station.
Police said he has allegedly admitted his involvement in numerous other snatching incidents, which are being verified.