A major bike theft gang was caught by the crime branch department of Vizag City Police. On Monday, a total of 10 accused people were arrested and 76 two-wheeler vehicles were seized.
Among the 10 caught, the main accused are 37-year-old Mohammed Ahamad, of Allipuram, 27-year-old Gosangi Anand, an automobile mechanic of Poorna Market area, and 30-year-old Bantupalli Suresh of Allipuram. The other accused are iron scrap dealers from different locations in Vizag.
Speaking to the media, Assistant Commissioner of Police (Crimes), CH Penta Rao, said “We received a complaint by an employee of HPCL, P Murali Krishna, that someone had stolen his two-wheeler in Malkapuram area. Based on this complaint, we related it with similar complaints we received previously. A team was formed with 21 policemen on 1 August and started investigating the case.”
During the investigation, police initially kept an eye on Mohammed Ahamad who works as a mechanic at Allipuram and already had a case registered against him. During their preliminary investigation, police found the chassis and engine number of the motorbike were erased and got replaced by a new set of numbers that were embossed. It was found that though the bike was the latest model, the registration book had a date of 1996. “This raised a suspicion on the bike theft cases and after further investigation, we could trace 76 motorbikes, including 58 from Visakhapatnam and 18 from U Kothapalli of East Godavari,” ACP Crimes added.
According to the police, the main accused Mohammed Ahamad had some contacts in U Kothapalli. He would convince people to remodel their old bikes and then collect an advance of Rs 20,000- Rs 30,000. Taking the registration books, and other documents pertaining to the vehicles, he would bring those vehicles to Vizag. Later, he would dismantle the parts with the help of Anand and Suresh. Mohammed Ahamad would erase the engine and chassis numbers, note them down and sell the spare parts to the scrap merchants.
Then, the mechanic would go for bike thefts especially targeting new bikes and high-end bikes. Once stolen, he and his gang will erase the engine, registration and chassis numbers and emboss the numbers of the old bikes which were brought for remodelling. Once they have made all the changes, they either sell it to the customers or scrap dealers.
Police seized 76 motorcycles, worth Rs. 30,40,000, a grinding machine, punching tools, and 3 cell phones from the gang.
On cracking the major bike theft gang, Vizag City Police Commissioner, Manish Kumar Sinha IPS, appreciated the efforts of the team.
This is not the first time a bike theft gang has been caught in Visakhapatnam. Two weeks ago, 3 people, including 2 juveniles, were arrested for multiple counts of bike thefts in the city.