The robbers — two men and a woman — who actually carried out the Rs 14-crore “dacoity-that-never-was” at Forever Diamonds in Sector 17 on May 1 landed in the police net on Thursday. In a bizarre twist, they have told the police that Vinod Verma, the co-owner of the store, had asked them to ‘play robbers’ that day for a movie shoot.
Police claimed that the men were convinced for the job by their relative Amit Kumar, owner of Jagdamba Jewellers, Sector 37, who was a customer of Forever Diamonds.
A police source said Amit had absconded to Bangkok, and only his arrest would make clear what motivated him to ask his relatives to act as dacoits.
The accused have been identified as Amit’s brother-in-law Vaibhav Verma, 37, a resident of PGI Society, Sector 49; his brother-in-law Ankur Jolly, 22, a resident of Zirakpur; and Shivani, a resident of Maloya, who worked as a salesgirl at Jagdamba Jewellers.
They have been booked under Sections 420 (cheating); 467 (forgery of valuable security); 468 (forgery for cheating), 471 (using as genuine a forged document) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC.
To add authenticity to their claim of dacoity, the jeweller brothers asked them to open the strong room and ransack empty boxes. But sensing something was wrong, the trio refused, after which the jewellers asked them to leave the showroom, a police source claimed.
The escape route
The trio then went towards the Sector 17-18 dividing road from where the woman hired an auto to her house in Maloya, whereas the men returned to the parking lots of Neelam Theatre, where they had parked their motorcycles.
Empty bags all along
The police said Verma had asked them to bring bags so that they could take away some jewellery from the showroom, as part of the “scene”. However, when asked to enter the strong room, they got scared.
“While entering and also while exiting, they were carrying empty bags,” said a police official, adding that the digital video recorder had been hidden by Vinod and they were yet to recover it.
Co-accused Rajneesh Verma still out of police reach
Co-owner of Forever Diamonds and Vinod’s brother Rajneesh Verma continues to be at large, three days after his brother’s arrest. The police are searching for him with the help of his family members.