Man held after priest urges him to confess to robbery

POLICE on Saturday arrested a 25-year-old watchman of St Blaise Church,Amboli,for allegedly stealing Rs 90,000 from the donation box in November last year.

Written by Megha Sood | Published: April 1, 2013 1:43:15 am

POLICE on Saturday arrested a 25-year-old watchman of St Blaise Church,Amboli,for allegedly stealing Rs 90,000 from the donation box in November last year.

Prakash Sharma,who had buried the cash at his village in Uttar Pradesh before returning to duty last year,was convinced by the church priest to confess to the crime and was reportedly promised that he would not be handed over to the police.

The priest,Fr Joseph John Pemento,had filed a complaint that an unidentified person had looted the donation box in November. The police had then questioned Sharma,who was reported missing for two days by the priest. Sharma told police he had been unwell and was at his accommodation near the church. Police began investigating Sharma’s background.

Assistant inspector Irfan Shaikh said,“We found that on the day after the robbery,the location of his mobile phone was recorded as Uttar Pradesh and then Mumbai within 24 hours,” said Shaikh.

On Wednesday,the priest called Sharma to his chamber and confronted him about the theft. Sharma refused to confess. “It was only when the priest assured Sharma that he would not be reported to police did he admit to the theft.

Sharma added he had wrapped the cash and buried it on a vacant plot near his house in UP,” said Shaikh. The police arrested Sharma and recovered the cash from his village on Saturday. Sharma was presented in a court on Sunday and remanded in police custody.

The ‘promise’

Prakash Sharma,who had buried the cash at his village in Uttar Pradesh before returning to his duty last year,was convinced by the church priest to confess to the crime and was reportedly promised that he would not be handed over to police

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