The Chembur police has finally arrested a 36-year-old man who loved stealing only a particular brand of scooters. Esmaeel Javed Shaikh, who is allegedly an expert in making duplicate keys of Honda Activa bikes in a matter of minutes, would steal the parked two-wheelers and seemingly vanish into thin air, leaving cops stumped.
Shaikh, a resident of Shivaji Nagar in Govandi, stole most of the scooters from Western suburbs and south Mumbai in the dead of night and sold them to shops in Govandi.
His luck finally ran out on Friday when he was arrested while running away with another scooter. Cops said Shaikh, who is married and has a daughter, had been arrested earlier too for stealing the same brand of scooters. Assistant police inspector (API) Pradeep Vani of Chembur police station told SUNDAY MiD DAY, “We discovered he was selling these bikes in Govandi to unsuspecting buyers. He would take a down payment from them and assure them that he would give them the final papers in a few weeks.”
The buyers apparently did not suspect anything amiss since they drove the bikes in Govandi itself, awaiting the final paperwork. “But Shaikh never got back to them after he took the initial amount,” Vani said.
A team consisting of API Pradeep Vani, ASI R Thigade and constables Anil Ghorpade, Raju Padalkar, Dhanaji Borate and Dharmendra Thakur later took Shaikh to each of his clients and recovered 11 stolen scooters. They hope to recover four more Activa scooters, which the accused has confessed to having stolen. Shaikh has been booked under section 392 (punishment for robbery) of the Indian Penal Code and remanded to police custody till Monday.