Anti-extortion cell gets gangster Suresh Pujari’s custody till Jan 26
Mumbai Gangster Suresh Pujari has been arrested by the Anti-Extortion Cell (AEC) of the Mumbai crime branch in connection with a 2018 extortion case related to a south Mumbai-based businessman. He was produced before a court on Friday, which remanded him to police custody till January 29.
Pujari is the seventh accused to be arrested in the case as the AEC had earlier arrested six others, including a minor, in the case. It had reportedly recovered two pistols and five live cartridges from them.
Pujari was extradited from the Philippines, where he was nabbed in October 2021, and handed over to Maharashtra ATS on his arrival in New Delhi on December 15.
He was earlier arrested in an extortion case registered in Kalyan, which is being investigated by the Thane unit of the ATS.
While Pujari was in the ATS custody, a new extortion case was registered against him on January 19 after a businessman claimed that the gangster had called him in October 2021 and demanded ₹10 lakh. Pujari was, subsequently, handed over to the Vikhroli ATS unit.
The complainant, who operated a camera shop in South Mumbai, claimed that he received a threatening call from Pujari from an international number on January 6, 2018. Pujari allegedly demanded ₹50 lakh and threatened to kill him, if he failed to pay the amount.
The businessman later filed a complaint with the MRA Marg police station on January 19, 2018. The case was later transferred to the Anti-Extortion Cell, which is probing 10 cases against the extradited gangster.
An AEC officer said that of the six accused arrested earlier, some were involved in the Ulhasnagar firing case.
There are 51 cases registered against Pujari across the Mumbai metropolitan region. “Pujari has 17 extortion cases in Mumbai, 30 in Thane, including three MCOCA cases in each district, two cases in ATS, one in Mira Bhayander and one in Navi Mumbai,” a senior officer said.
He was on the run for 14 years and Interpol had issued a Red Corner Notice against him in 2016.
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