COIMBATORE: Three days after a masked man robbed a leading finance firm of 803 sovereigns jewellery and Rs 1.34 lakh cash, police arrested a staff of the firm and her 32-year-old friend for their alleged roles in the crime.
On Tuesday, the special team also seized 4,780 bars of gold (97.5 sovereigns) and `1 lakh cash from them. The man allegedly admitted to have melted the jewellery into bars and claimed that 803 sovereigns of jewellery gave him only bars of 597 sovereigns after the conversion.
All this had been an elaborate plan to help the man recover from the loss sustained in stock market investments, said police.The staff arrested on Tuesday was one of the two workers in office at the time of the robbery. After the Saturday’s incident came to light, the firm’s management said that she and the other female staff had been assaulted by the robber, who then went straight to the locker and stole the valuables. Both workers were then admitted to a hospital for treatment.
Later, police reportedly found that news of the robbery reached the management an hour after it happened but the latter made it public only the next day. Hence, they started looking into the firm’s staff. It was then that their attention turned to one of the workers at the scene of crime. Call records of the woman showed that she had contacted one number, repeatedly, on Monday night. Suspecting the person on the other end of the line to be the robber, police interrogated her. She then confessed to the entire crime, police said.
According to police, the robber – employed at a private mobile phone company – had befriended this woman during his frequent visits to the firm to pledge gold jewellery. He had invested lakhs of rupees in share market and then faced huge loss in it over the past few years. It was when he approached her asking for help to overcome the loss that the two hatched a plan to rob the firm, the police explained.
On Saturday, as per their plan, she had reportedly unlocked the door to the strong room, where all the money and jewellery was stored. She had then waited for him to show up and fell unconscious, pretending to have been assaulted by him. The other worker present had not been aware of the plot, police said.
“The jewellery is kept in a steel bureau in the strong room that is secured by two doors. Staff usually leave only the first door open for ease of use. However, the robber had been able to enter the strong room by easily surpassing the entire security system using original keys. This made us suspect the workers. Investigation revealed that it was this woman who had undone all security measures before the robbery,” said a police official.
The case that was initially registered under Section 392 (robbery) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) was altered to include Section 201 (causing disappearance of evidence). The woman, employed at the finance firm, is married and has two children. Her friend, the robber, is also married and with two children.
Repeated phone calls
Call records of the woman showed that she had contacted one number, repeatedly, on Monday night. So, police interrogated her. She then confessed to the entire crime