New gang uses kids to steal at weddings in Juhu, Santacruz | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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New gang uses kids to steal at weddings in Juhu, Santacruz

A new gang targeting weddings has been in operation this season. The gang's peculiarity is that it has children doing the dirty work.

mumbai Updated: Dec 24, 2010 00:56 IST
HT Correspondent

A new gang targeting weddings has been in operation this season. The gang's peculiarity is that it has children doing the dirty work. In the past four days, four such cases have been registered with the Santacruz and Juhu police in which cash and valuables worth over Rs 10 lakh have been stolen.

Police said the thefts were committed at hotel Sea Princess, Ramada, Mandapam, a hall run by the Hare Rama Hare Krishna Trust and Aajivasan Hall, all in Santacruz and Juhu from where cash and valuables worth Rs 1lakh, Rs 3lakh, Rs 5.50lakh and Rs 60,000 respectively were stolen. Although CCTV footage from the weddings at Sea Princess, Ramada and Mandapam clearly show juveniles picking up cash and valuables, police feel children are being and trained to do so by professional criminals.

“The gang is using children to carry out the crime and are targeting weddings, as people are engrossed in their own activities at such events, giving them ample time to strike and leave without raising suspicion,” said inspector Madhukar Chaudhari of Santacruz police station.

The Santacruz police have detained a 10-year-old girl who was captured on CCTV at Ramada Hotel while picking up cash and valuables worth Rs 10lakh on December 19. The girl was nabbed from Bandra station. “The girl is in our custody but so far she has not said anything that will help us in the case,” Chaudhari added.

In Juhu, two juveniles were captured picking up a bag containing jewellery during a wedding reception at Mandapam Hall. The father of the bride who realised that the valuables were missing only after the function ended, reported the matter to the Juhu police. “We have asked the complainant's family to go through the video recording and identify strangers. We will question the caterers and decorators,” said Deepak Katkade, senior inspector. KMM Prasanna, deputy commissioner of police (zone 9), said, “In all four cases, the modus operandi used is the same and, hence, we think it is the same gang operating in the area.”