Muthoot robbers have pan-India network
By Jayendra Chaithanya T | Express News Service | Published: 11th January 2017 06:23 AM |
HYDERABAD: It was not just five members who impersonated themselves as CBI officers who took part in the biggest heist in the state decamping with around 46 kg of gold from Muthoot Finance office at Ramachandrapuram in Cyberabad. The investigation into the case has revealed that the gang has not fewer than 50 members with a wide network spread across India.
Moreover, it was not the first time they chose a target in Hyderabad. The same gang had attempted a robbery in Mini Muthoot in RC Puram on February 5, 2015, in Gulbarga on May 16, 2015 and at Kukatpally Muthoot Fincorp on May 20, 2015. A day before the robbery at RC Puram, the members of the same gang robbed Muthoot Fincorp at Dharoji in Gujarat. The modus operandi had been the same, said a police officer who is part of the investigation.
Surprisingly, investigators found, the modus operandi also included forming of gangs for one offence at a time. The same members would never be grouped again. They have been following this style for over 10 years.
The gang used an informant in the RC Puram incident, who acted as a customer, to provide information to the gang.
The mobile numbers used by the robbers in the heist have been traced to Mumbai and Meerut. The gang is spread across the country, with each active member having his own network of criminals in Tamil Nadu, New Delhi, Maharashtra, Telangana, Karnataka and Gujarat, said an officer on condition of anonymity.
“The gang has a criminal history. The main persons in the gang were earlier arrested for extortion. All the gang members have met in jail at some point of time. They helped each other get out on bail, or provide financial assistance to each other,” the police officer said.
Though the police apprehended two accused in the RC Puram robbery case, they could not trace the gold. “None of the gang members spilled the beans on their accomplices or the gold dump. The gang members store the gold at a place in Mumbai,” the officer said.