The arrest of a small-time goldsmith in a petty theft case in Dadri lead the Noida Police to a breakthrough in a loot case in which 1kg gold was stolen.
Following the goldsmith’s interrogation, the alleged mastermind of the robbery and his two accomplices were arrested Tuesday. At least ₹30 lakh and 400gm gold were recovered from the suspects.
According to the police, the three suspects had snatched a gold consignment from two staff members of a jewellery designing firm based in Noida Special Economic Zone (NSEZ) on May 20. The Dadri police initially had picked up the jeweler in connection with a petty theft case in the area, however during interrogation he allegedly revealed that he was involved in buying 1 kg of stolen gold for ₹30 lakh from three suspects. The police then arrested all four persons.
Police said that on May 20, a production manager and a driver of the private firm had left office for Okhla with the gold consignment in a Maruti Ritz car. They had stopped near a road side kiosk to buy tobacco products. “While the staffers were busy at the kiosk, two men on a Bajaj Pulsar motorcycle came and stole the car, with the gold consignment inside it, near Swarnim Vihar, Sector 82. They later abandoned the Ritz in Sector 110 and fled with the gold consignment,” Vaibhav Krishna, senior superintendent of police, said.
He said although the Phase II police had registered an FIR, they could not get a concrete lead for a week despite intensive search. Krishna said the lead came from Dadri police based on a tip off from an informer. “We received information that a small-time jeweller was acting suspicious. There was a sudden change in his lifestyle,” he said.
Krishna said Dadri police picked up the jeweler, 26-year-old Ashvini, in connection with another case of theft a few days ago. “But he also ended up revealing that he had bought 1 kg gold from the three arrested suspects – Vikas, 23, Bhupendra, 32 and Israr, 22 – a few days ago,” he said.
Ashvini allegedly also revealed that Vikas, the alleged mastermind, works as a mechanic in an automobile company, next to the jewellery designing firm, in NSEZ. Based on the information, the police arrested the three suspects from near a pond behind Durga Temple in Dadri where they had come to distribute the money.
Police said Vikas allegedly admitted that he hatched the plot to make easy money. Krishna said the gang had a unique modus operandi. Since Vikas worked in NSEZ, he was aware that all vehicles exiting the NSEZ campus need to get a dispatch challan at gate number 1. “The exporters need to furnish some details about the consignment and the destination. Vikas got the information about this gold consignment and engaged Bhupendra and Israr. He then engaged Ashvini, his friend during school days, to buy the stolen consignment. Bhupendra and Israr rode the motorcycle and snatched the car and gold consignment from the company staff and then sold the stolen items to Ashvini,” the SSP said.
Ashvini allegedly sold 600gm of the stolen gold in Dadri. “We have also recovered two countrymade guns, two live cartridges, a motorcycle,” Krishna said. The suspects were produced in court and later sent to judicial custody.