A day after a gang of five dacoits barged into a flat in Vashi and decamped with cash and gold of a collective value of Rs 2.09 crore, the police said they had identified the five who are history-sheeters from Mumbra. Footage from CCTV cameras installed on the sixth floor, where they targeted an APMC trader’s apartment, shows their faces without any mask, said the police. However, a woman who was used as a bait to ensure that the occupants of the flat open the door, does not have any criminal record in the police department, said a source.
Investigations into the armed robbery at the house of a wholesale vegetable vendor in Vashi has found that the perpetrators sent the police on a wrong trail by planting one of their mobile phones in a van headed towards Gujarat. Sources said the robbery was hatched over a month ago by a husband-wife duo who kept watch on the victim during this time. The gang, consisting five men and a woman, robbed the house of Arun Menkudle, a trader at an APMC market, in Vashi’s Sector 17 on Friday. Police have identified the perpetrators and released their images, which were captured by the housing society’s CCTV camera, and are yet to arrest the accused.
“Around 12.15 pm on Friday, a woman knocked on the door, claiming to be from a courier service. When the Menkudle’s daughter opened the door, the men and the woman barged in with revolvers and choppers. The woman, who has been identified as Tabassum, had planned the robbery with her husband, identified as Umar. Both the accused are residents of Mumbra,” said an officer privy to the investigation.
Interestingly, after committing the crime, the husband-wife duo went back to their home in Mumbra, had food and only then went into hiding. Cops believe the accused did this as they were confident that they had sent the investigators on the wrong trail.
Police sources said that the owner of a vehicle used in the dacoity has been identified. The car owner is also involved in the dacoity , said an officer. “We suspect they have fled to Gujarat,“ said the officer.
DCP (crime) Tushar Doshi said, “There is some progress in the case, but sharing details of it at this juncture will be a bit premature.“
Joint Commissioner of Police Prashant Burde said that six teams have been formed to trace the dacoits.