VISAKHAPATNAM: The Parawada police arrested a 13-member gang, who allegedly threatened a realtor to exchange demonetised currency notes worth Rs 1,00,97,000 in the city. The police seized demonetised notes, one revolver, six dummy bullets and three walkie-talkies from the gang. It is learnt that the gang, trying for a business deal with the realtor to exchange the demonetised notes, used a vehicle with a police board and two stars of IG-level police officer to escape the police.
The seven main accused have been identified as S Manohar (A-1, Srikakulam), PV Nageswara Rao alias Naresh (A-2, Madhurawada), M Umamaheswara Rao (A-3, Kommadi), P Paatannaidu (A-4 Vizianagaram), S Venkateswara Rao (A-5, Chinnamushidivada), K Visweswara Rao (A-6 Anakapalli) and Naani, a friend of Naresh, (A-7, Vizag), who is absconding.
Addressing media persons, Commissioner of Police RK Meena on Wednesday gave details of the gang trying for a business deal with the realtor and were arrested after a complaint was filed by one P Guranatha Nooka Raju, the realtor from Lankelapalem. According to the police, a friend of the complainant, who is also a realtor, had a business deal with the gang, led by S Manohar, Nageswara Rao and Umamaheswara Rao, promising to exchange the demonetised currency notes with new ones in the ratio of Rs 1 crore demonetised currency for Rs 15 lakh of new currency notes. After the gang procured the old notes, they couldn’t trace the person, who promised to clinch the deal.
As the complainant was also present during the discussions on the exchange of the demonetised notes on August 18, the gang visited the shop of the complainant at Parawada, threatened him with a revolver to exchange their demonetised currency notes. Worried about the situation, Nooka Raju approached the police. On a tip-off, Parawada Inspector Raghuveer Vishnu and his team conducted surprise checks at Aganampudi Toll Plaza and arrested six members of the gang, travelling in a car from Anakapalle towards Gajuwaka. The police checked the vehicles and seized the demonetised currency, a revolver, six dummy bullets and three walkie-talkies from the gang.
“During interrogation, the accused confessed that seven more persons were involved in this business. They threatened the complainant with a big toy revolver. They might have procured currency from various sources. We are investigating on how the accused got hold of the demonetised currency,” Meena said. Cases were booked under Section 25 (1b)(a) of the Indian Arms Act and Section 5 and 7 of Specified Bank Notes (Cessation of Liabilities) Act, 2017. While the six accused have been sent to police remand, the police are searching for the absconding accused.