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BANGALORE: The city police arrested nine men in connection with the Rs. 5-crore jewellery heist from the Muthoot Finance branch at New Thippasandra here. The prime accused is Nirmal Rajkumar, who was running a computer shop opposite the finance firm.
The other accused are Jaikumar, Bhaskaran, Das Prakash, Madivannan, Suresh, Sethu, Manoj and Laurel Hoody.
Nirmal Rajkumar, a building contractor and a network programmer, “wanted to make good the losses in his business and planned the heist,” said Police Commissioner Shankar M. Bidari.
“We have recovered all the ornaments stolen from the firm, but not the Rs.1.6 lakh as it had been spent by them for air travel.”
This is one of the highest recoveries made by the Karnataka police, Mr. Bidari claimed.
On June 2, the nine men allegedly stole 34.6 kg gold ornaments that had been pledged with the firm by loan-seekers. In a well-planned operation, they allegedly rammed the firm manager Isaac John’s scooter on Indiranagar 12th Main.
On the pretext of giving medical aid, they abducted him, administered chloroform to render him unconscious, took away the keys, drove him to Malur in Kolar district in a van and abandoned him in a eucalyptus grove there, Mr. Bidari said.
Nirmal Rajkumar, a former customer of the finance firm, first roped in Jaikumar, his plumber. The latter in turn involved his friends, who were traders from Thiruvannamalai.
The police first got a hint about Nirmal Rajkumar’s involvement as his shop remained closed since the day of the heist.
They then tracked down the gang, sending teams to New Delhi, Thiruvannamalai and Mumbai.
“Nirmal Rajkumar and three others were in New Delhi, planning to leave for Punjab to sell the ornaments,” Mr. Bidari said.
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