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3 held for kidnapping, killing Mumbai businessman

The accused, Prashant Sankhe, 38, and Samdev Santosh Sankhe, 20, were arrested from Vapi, while Prashant Mahajan, 35, was caught in Amalner, Jalgaon.

mumbai Updated: May 14, 2019 00:43 IST
Ram Parmar
Ram Parmar
Hindustan Times
Mira Road businessman,Palghar,Mumbai crime
Arif Shaikh was kidnapped on May 9.(HT Photo)

Four days after a 39-year-old businessman from Mira Road was abducted, the police on Monday arrested three men for allegedly kidnapping, killing him, and burning his body.

The accused, Prashant Sankhe, 38, and Samdev Santosh Sankhe, 20, were arrested from Vapi, while Prashant Mahajan, 35, was caught in Amalner, Jalgaon.

The Palghar police have also detained a woman, Smita Shetty, 45, and are questioning her, said Yogesh Chavan, additional superintendent of police, Palghar. Shetty used to work for a Palghar factory, which purchased parts of mixers and grinders from vendors.

Chavan said the victim, Arif Shaikh, and the main accused, Prashant, were rivals as both supplied parts for grinders and mixers to the same Palghar factory. “Their rivalry is the motive behind the murder,” Chavan said.

On May 9, Shaikh boarded an autorickshaw from Palghar station to go to his factory, located around 5km away. The auto was stopped a few metres away from the factory, after an SUV waylaid them and three people forced Shaikh to get into the vehicle and sped away.

According to the Palghar police, while the SUV was taking a turn, Shaikh called out for help. The accused panicked; one of them held Shaikh’s nose while the other shut his mouth, leading to his death, said Chavan.

“Shaikh’s body was burnt using 15 litres of petrol in Birwadi, near Boisar on May 9…Till now, we have not found the body,” the officer said, adding that Prashant led the police to the spot where the accused allegedly burnt the victim’s body.

“The accused trio have been booked under sections 302 (murder) and 365 (kidnap) and 201 (destroying evidence) of the Indian Penal Code,” said Chavan.

The accused will be produced before the Palghar court on Tuesday and more accused could be arrested in the murder, said the officer.

First Published: May 14, 2019 00:30 IST