Reading news reports, robbers chose Gurugram expressway
At least 20 cases of lift-and-loot have been reported in the city in 2019 and 15 were reported in the last two months of 2018.Updated: Mar 17, 2019 03:48 IST
Questioning of 26-year-old Sumit Kumar, who was arrested for masterminding robberies of commuters in cabs, has started revealing links to several other criminal activities he was involved in the past, the police said. He was involved in multiple cases and has been lodged in many jails across Delhi-NCR, the police said.
Kumar, along with his friends Sandeep Sharma and Yogi (yet to be arrested), had planned to rob people in Gurugram after reading news of such robberies in the newspaper. The car they used is owned by Yogi, said police, adding that Sharma left his job with a courier company to join Kumar’s gang to make a quick buck.
At least 20 cases of lift-and-loot have been reported in the city in 2019 and 15 were reported in the last two months of 2018.
The police said that Kumar was allegedly involved in at least 30 cases of car-jacking, lift-and-loot, extortion and laptop thefts. He was released from jail on January 10, after serving a 10-month sentence, the police said.
Shamsher Singh, the assistant commissioner of police (crime), said this was the most wanted interstate gang who were allegedly targeting people in Faridabad, Palwal, Delhi and Gurugram. “We will write to our counterparts and will prepare a database on how many people they have targeted so far and from which areas,” he said.
Singh said the gang’s modus operandi was to offer lift and threaten the victim with a lighter, which looks like a pistol. They used to force victims to reveal their ATM PINs after rolling shutting their eyes and immobilising them with tape.
They used to ensure the victim did not get up from the footrest area and wore a mask while entering the ATM kiosk to hide their identity.
The police said the gang was involved in four incidents in Gurugram. The last incident after which they were arrested was reported on March 11, wherein two men who came to the city for the Staff Selection Commission (SSC) recruitment exam, for the post of constable, were assaulted and robbed of their belongings and cash at gunpoint after they tried to hitchhike their way home from Hero Honda Chowk. They were later thrown out of the car on an isolated stretch on the Golf Course Extension Road, police said.
The victims were identified as Rajasthan residents Ajay Sharma and his friend Akil Khan.
Rajiv Deswal, the deputy commissioner of police (crime), said Kumar was first arrested in 2012 when he was a 19-year-old. He, along with his friends, was arrested for allegedly trying to extort a Ghaziabad businessman. “Kumar got inspired from a lift-and-loot gang member he befriended in jail. He formed a gang and targeted executives in Noida, Ghaziabad and Delhi. Within three months, he was arrested by the Delhi Police and was jailed for three months,” he said.
The police said that Kumar, according to the investigation so far, seems to have been helping other wanted men and criminals in Ghaziabad form gangs.
The police said the possibility of other such gangs operating in the region cannot be ruled out.
First Published: Mar 17, 2019 03:48 IST