Five Mumbai-based Irani tribal community gang members, who are wanted in ten states across the country for crimes, have been arrested by the city police.
They were arrested by City Crime Branch on July 8 here when they were preparing to commit another criminal offence, Police Commissioner M N Reddi told reporters here on Wednesday.
"The arrested persons belong to Irani tribal community in India. Originally they are from Iran who came to India as horse traders during the Mughal period. After the collapse of Mughal dynasty, they continued to live in India as vagabonds," Reddi said.
The gang members, who operated in major cities, including Bangalore, used to impersonate themselves as police officers and were targeting elderly women and robbing them of gold jewels by diverting their attention, he said.
The gang used to target at least ten elderly women and after committing the offence, they would go back to Mumbai to avoid arrest, the Commissioner said.
During interrogations, it was found out that the gang members, led by Lala Sameer Jafar Hussain, had committed offences in Bangalore, Mangalore, Udupi and Mysore districts, Reddi said.
They also admitted to having committed offences in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Goa, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi, he said adding, "Lala is the most wanted criminal in more than ten states." Gold ornaments weighing about two kg and 100 grams were recovered from jewellers at Gulbarga and Lala's house at Ambivali in Mumbai, Reddi said. A Jeep and a motorcycle used for offence were also recovered, he added.