Women gang involved in theft at capital mall busted, nine arrested
At least 13 women had arrived in the city on May 31 and booked rooms at a guesthouse near Jagamara.
BHUBANESWAR: Commissionerate police busted an all-women gang and arrested nine of its members hailing from West Bengal for allegedly committing theft at a mall in the state capital. The accused, related to each other, are natives of Bijpur in North 24 Parganas, said police.
At least 13 women had arrived in the city on May 31 and booked rooms at a guesthouse near Jagamara. The women stole various valuables and consumable goods from a mall in Nayapalli the same day. The mall’s staff examined the CCTV footage, identified the suspects and informed police.
The police asked the staff to remain alert and immediately reach out to them if the women visited the mall again. Around nine members of the gang visited the mall on Thursday again and stole various cosmetic items, 40 bottles of Horlicks and other articles. The mall’s staff spotted the women and informed police.
The accused were nabbed from the spot and the stolen articles recovered from them. The gang members’ modus operandi was to visit malls in sarees and steal expensive cosmetic items, face wash, shampoo, cream, consumable goods like spices and other articles,” said ACP Sanjeev Satpathy. They concealed the stolen items in their sarees and fled. The accused purchased cheaper articles to show the bills in an attempt to avoid suspicion and checks by security guards.
Police conducted a search at the hotel where the accused were staying and seized stolen articles worth over Rs 1 lakh. The accused told police they were planning to sell the stolen articles in Bijpur at a lower price. Police suspect the accused may have committed thefts in the city in the past too.
“We are verifying whether the guesthouse is registered under Sarai Act and if its owner regularly shares information about the guests with police. If the owner is found violating the rules, action will be initiated against him,” said Satpathy. Four members of the gang including two male associates are still at large and efforts are on to nab them.
On May 22, the city police had arrested four members of the notorious Bawariya gang for their involvement in a series of snatching incidents in Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Puri, Balasore and Bhadrak in the last four months. All accused are natives of Shamli in Uttar Pradesh.