A 38-year-old security guard posted at the Tulsidas Gopalji Pavelion charitable trust, near the Mahalaxmi temple, was arrested on Thursday for allegedly raping a woman several times over the last six months.
The 35-year-old victim, a mother of two, runs a coconut stall in the Trambakeshwar temple premises. She lodged a complaint with the Gamdevi police on November 8 alleging that the guard, Datta Kothavale, had taken her to a guest house in Bhoiwada, claiming he wanted to introduce her to her family. He then spiked her drink and raped her, she alleged. He also took objectionable videos of her, which he used to blackmail and rape her on several occasions.
Kothavale, who had been on the run, was caught on Thursday evening. "We received a tip off that he would be coming to the city. We laid a trap and arrested him from the Mumbai Central ST depot at around 6.30 pm," said Ravindra Gamre, assistant inspector, Gamdevi police. The police recovered his mobile phone and are scanning it.
"Kothavale and the victim got acquainted as he visited her coconut stall to collect money (hafta). Kothavale was also a local goon and would collect haftas from around 15 hawkers who have illegal stalls in the premises," said Manoj Hegiste, assistant inspector, Gamdevi police.
When the police went to search Kothavale's house in Kamothe, Navi Mumbai, they came to know he had gone to Dharwad. The accused stays with his wife and two children.
A medical test was conducted on the victim at the Nagpada police hospital and a case was registered against Kothavale under sections 376 (rape) and 328 (causing hurt by means of poison, etc., with intent to commit an offence) of the IPC.