A driver of cash van, who escaped along with Rs 1.28 crore in cash from suburban Trombay, has been arrested and the amount has been recovered, police said on Saturday.
Acting on a tip-off, sleuths of Crime Branch's property cell arrested the 24-year-old accused, Amar Singh, from Kalyan railway station on Friday night around midnight after a brief chase when he was going to board a train to his native place in Bihar, they said.
He was caught with half of the stolen cash, while the remaining amount was later recovered from his residence, with Mumbai police claiming to have cracked the within ten hours of the crime.
Singh had escaped with Rs 1.28 crore in cash on Friday, when other occupant of the van were busy replenishing cash in an ATM.
According to police, the van was hired by a cash management solution provider named LogiCash and loaded with cash on Friday by the company's Navi Mumbai office to be deposited in various ATM kiosks in the city.
The van reached an ATM of Central Bank of India in Trombay at about 2.30 pm to deposit Rs 16 lakh in cash. After the van stopped and three company officials as well as a security guard got down and started replenishing cash in the ATM machine, Amar Singh, who was waiting outside, drove away the vehicle containing cash of about Rs 1.28 crore, police said.
Soon after the incident, company officials called up the police control room number to inform the incident even as the police immediately swung into action and efforts were made to track down the vehicle since it is installed with a GPS navigation device.
Later, police found the van abandoned in Matunga area with the cash and driver missing.
"Based on a reliable information received by property cell inspector Nandkumar Gopale and his team, a trap was laid at the railway station where the accused reached to escape to his native place in Bihar. We have recovered half of the cash from his possession and remaining cash from his house in Belapur in Navi Mumbai," deputy police commissioner (crime) Dhananjay Kulkarni said.
A total of Rs 1.24 crore in cash was recovered from Singh.
"The accused committed the crime to pay off loans of the family. After the crime, he purchased some mobile phones, sarees and clothes. The culprit was produced before a court here (Mumbai) which remanded him in police custody till April 4," Kulkarni said.