THE MUMBAI Police on Thursday arrested five persons for allegedly robbing Rs 16.5 lakh from a cash van of a security company last Wednesday. The Mankhurd police that solved the case said they are still on the lookout for eight other accused who were part of the gang that carried out the robbery. So far, the police have recovered Rs 1 lakh from the accused.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (zone 6), Shahaji Umap said: “We have arrested five people who were involved in the crime, including an auto- driver who was the mastermind. We are still on the lookout for eight others. There were two-three separate groups that were involved in the gang that carried out the crime. We have recovered Rs 1 lakh so far.” S Vernekar, senior inspector Mankhurd police station said that one group had the task of procuring a stolen vehicle that could be used to carry out the crime. Another group had to procure SIM cards using forged documents, while the third group executed the robbery.
Assistant Police Inspector J Sayyad said: “The breakthrough came after we found the accused, who came in a Maruti Eeco car, dumped the four-wheeler and left in an auto. We tracked the auto driver Mohammad Sagir and interrogated him. He confessed to his involvement in the crime.”
Based on his interrogation, the police arrested Vijay Lohat (38), David Lawrence (33), Jagdish Suvarna (49) and Santosh Rajput (30). The accused have several robbery cases registered against them.
An officer said the accused had been keeping an eye on the vehicle that had collected money from 29 spots before collecting money from Govandi railway station. The accused blocked the path of the cash van while it was headed to the Sion-Panvel HIghway from Mankhurd railway station.
While the accused fled with two bags containing more than Rs 16 lakh, they did not see a bag containing Rs 35 lakh in the vehicle. The armed accused also broke the glass of the cash van and hit the driver on his hand before fleeing the spot, said police.