The Thane Crime Branch hit a jackpot on Monday when they arrested a gang of four criminals, headed by a 16-year-old boy, for allegedly raping and murdering a 22-year-old girl and stealing valuables worth Rs 1.6 lakh in Kalyan. Turns out, these four were accused in three other recent cases in Thane.
Thane Crime Branch arrested the gang on Monday
The accused, identified as Nitin Wagh (19), Nitesh alias Nitya Bhagwan Bhoir (20), Ravindra alias Ravi Wagh (20) and their 16-year-old leader, are tribals from Bandarpada in Kalyan.
The police have seized two sharp weapons, an Android mobile phone, a laptop and gold chain from the accused
On April 14, the gang broke into an apartment in Kalyan and killed a 22-year-old girl after the minor gang member raped her. The victim had recently appeared for MPSC (Maharashtra Public Service Commission) exams. “The accused had walked away with her mobile phone and jewellery worth Rs 1.6 lakh,” said Param Bir Singh, Commissioner of Police, Thane.
“The minor confessed that he had first assaulted the 22-year-old and then raped her. We are waiting for the post-mortem reports,” said Nagesh Lohar, Assistant Commissioner of Police, Thane Crime Branch. Since the minor was mastermind, cops said they will try that he be treated as an adult. “We will appeal in the juvenile justice court to treat the minor as an adult as he was the main accused and mastermind of the gang,” added Singh.
The victim lived with her brother and sister-in-law and her brother realised something was wrong when he heard someone shout ‘chor, chor’ (thief, thief) from the flat below theirs.
“In his statement the brother told the police that he and his wife were sleeping in the bedroom, while the victim was in the hall. He found that his bedroom door was locked from outside. He phoned his neighbours, who then broke into his apartment and opened the door. He then found his sister lying dead in the hall. Her throat was slit and her clothes torn. She was rushed to a nearby hospital where she was declared dead,” said a police official. The cops are awaiting the victim’s medical reports, which will ascertain if she was raped or not.
Mobile led to arrests
Police traced the accused through the victim’s mobile phone they had stolen. “The accused did not know how to use the mobile phone. They removed the victim’s SIM card and put their own in the phone. We could still trace their location that helped us arrest them,” said Devidas Gheware, senior police inspector, Central Crime Detection Unit, Thane Crime Branch.
The police have seized two sharp weapons, an Android mobile phone, a laptop and gold chain from the accused.
“It was a newly formed gang that had the minor as its head. They were committing crimes in want of a lavish life. Being from the same vicinity, they knew the buildings and the bylanes,” added ACP Lohar.
Three other cases were registered against the gang at Khadakpada police station. The first one took place on April 8 when the gang allegedly assaulted two watchmen — Deepak Kumar Mahut and Sanjay Yadav — at a Siddivinayak developer’s complex in Shahad. A case was registered under Sections 307 (attempt to murder) and 34 (Acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention) of the Indian Penal Code.
On late April 9 night, Deepak Bhoir, a watchman at a Century Chemical office in Shahad, was murdered and his body was buried in the compound. The case against the accused was registered under Sections 302 (murder), 201 (Causing disappearance of evidence of offence, or giving false information to screen offender) and 34 of IPC.
On April 10, when Sanjay Singh (28), a resident of Mangeshi Paradise in Shahad, tried to stop the accused from stealing a mercury bulb in the morning, the gang assaulted him with a sharp weapon. This resulted in another case against them under Sections 326 (Voluntarily causing grievous hurt by dangerous weapons or means) and 34 of IPC.