TURA, April 15: A major breakthrough has been made by West Garo Hills police into largescale vehicle theft across the region with the arrest of nine key members of a criminal gang from three dierent states and the recovery of hi-tech equipment including vehicle master keys and computer software used in lifting of vehicles.
The arrest includes two key leaders of the gang identied as Krebi A Sangma of Bokmagre village near Tura and Deep Ray alias Kamal from Dimapur town of Nagaland. A third member who oversaw the transfer of the stolen vehicles in Assam, Abdul Ali from Rongjuli town near Dudhnoi, was arrested on Monday evening by a joint police team of Assam and West Garo Hills police.
The entire Garo Hills region, particularly Tura town, has been plagued by vehicle theft for a very long time with frequent stealing of Mahindra Boleros, Pik-ups, pulsar and other two wheeler motorcycles and several dierent car models by gangs late in the night. Despite eorts of police to check this menace cases of vehicle disappearance continued to take place regularly.
A special investigation into the ongoing theft led police to as far as Dimapur town in Nagaland and Bongaigaon in Assam.
“We have arrested nine persons including the key gang members. The group is spread across Assam, Meghalaya and Nagaland. The tools they used for stealing vehicles such as master key for Boleros and other 4 wheelers, walkie talkie set, key programmer ODB type and even a live grenade have all been seized by our teams,” revealed West
Garo Hills Superintendent of Police MGR Kumar who spearheaded the special investigation to nab the gang.
Police have recovered several missing motorcycles and identied and frozen the bank account used by the gang to receive the money from sale of the stolen vehicles.
According to the district police chief, the gang comprised of a well established set up of members beginning from the recce group that would identify the potential target, a team that would lift the vehicle, the intermediate handlers who would take it across the state, a vehicle modifying group to erase the original identify of the vehicle, number plate and car document forgers and online data uploaders.
Police are optimistic some of the vehicles stolen can be recovered once interrogation of the nine arrested men take place.
The other gang members who have been arrested are Thangseng R Marak and Dikrak R Marak of Salpara Mendipathar (North Garo Hills), Diraz Tengbi Ch Marak of Jangrapara Tikrikilla, Jacky A Sangma of Mukdangra near Garobadha, Tinstar R Marak alias Rorok of Gajing Jangpara in Mendipather and Mayush Momin of Mongpangro, Mendipathar.
Two other members of the same gang, operating from Bongaigaon town of Assam and Dimapur in Nagaland are currently absconding from police. (Courtesy:TST)