Charge sheet filed in Maharashtra IAS officer’s extortion case

Private detective, his wife, gangster Ravi Pujari all charged for threatening IAS officer Radheshyam Mopalwar

mumbai Updated: Mar 09, 2018 00:36 IST
Mumbai,radheshyam mopalwar,Ravi Pujari
Satish Mangle (left) was arrested while allegedly accepting Rs 1 crore as bribe. His wife Shraddha (right) was arrested the next day.(HT FILE)

The Thane police on Wednesday filed a 1,731-page charge sheet against two private detectives and their relative for allegedly extorting money from IAS officer Radheshyam Mopalwar.

The charge sheet was submitted in the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime (MCOCA) court.

The police have recorded statement of 76 witnesses.

On November 2, when Thane anti-extortion cell arrested private detectives Satish Mangale, 27, and his 26-year-old wife Shraddha, for allegedly trying to extort Rs7 crore from Mopalwar, who was them the managing director of Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC).

Mangale was arrested while accepting Rs1 crore in his Dombivli house.

The next day, his wife Shraddha and brother-in-law Atul Gawde were arrested from Mira-Bhayander.

The charge sheet also names gangster Ravi Pujari and businessman Anil Vaid Mehta as wanted accused in the case.

Pujari had threatened Mopalwar and asked him to withdraw the case. Mehta, a Juhu resident, allegedly helps Pujari in extorting money.

Pradeep Sharma, senior police inspector from Thane anti-extortion cell, said, “On November 12 last year, Mopalwar received a threat call from Pujari, asking him to withdraw the case. On November 14, we added Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) charge against the three arrested accused.”

“We are investigating the case ahead as two accused names which have come ahead and we have also mentioned in the charge sheet their names. We are searching for them”.

In August, Mopalwar was removed from his post after Mangale made the audio clips public, saying that he was demanding bribe. Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis ordered an inquiry. Mopalwar had claimed that the tapes were doctored.

A police officer from Thane anti-extortion cell said, “We have also mentioned in the charge sheet that we have seized laptops, a spy camera and cell phones from the accused’s house. We have also mentioned about the CCTV footage of a hotel in Bhiwandi from where Satish had made the call to Mopalwar.”

The police are checking whether any of the property was purchased with the extortion money.

Sharma said they have found 500 to 600 RTI applications from Mangale’s house in Dombivli.

“Mangale used RTI applications to threaten and extort money from people. He had filed these applications in government departments in the past couple of years,” said Sharma.

He added that they are verifying the RTI applications that Mangale used to apply in his father’s or wife’s name.

The police said Mangale used to gift high-end mobile sets to celebrities and businessmen.

“We have learnt that some RTI documents that checked were used for extorting money,” said Sharma.

First Published: Mar 09, 2018 00:36 IST