Thane: Citizens help police nab 3 wanted criminals in early morning chase

The cops led a 30-minute operation and nabbed the three, who are wanted in more than 30 cases; they are now looking for a woman the accused worked for

Alert citizens and an active police force foiled an early morning robbery in Thane on Friday. After a 30-minute operation in a four-storey building, the Kopri police nabbed three wanted criminals, who were hiding on the terrace after attempting the robbery. Two of them were found from the water tank, while the third one was on the umbrella antenna.

Sanbabu Panikar, Sachin Namdev Masal and Ganesh Mani alias Ganya
Sanbabu Panikar, Sachin Namdev Masal and Ganesh Mani alias Ganya

The arrested accused have been identified as Ganesh Mani Narayan Swami Marijaan alias Ganya (30), a resident of Chembur, Sanbabu Panikar (25) from Kamothe, Navi Mumbai and Sachin Namdev Masal (23), from Mankhurd.

The broken window through which the accused slipped out of the house. They climbed the pipes outside this window and reached the terrace
The broken window through which the accused slipped out of the house. They climbed the pipes outside this window and reached the terrace

“All three are habitual offenders and are wanted across Mumbai in more than 30 cases. They were produced in a Thane court on Friday and are in police custody till January 27,” said SS Kalbande, senior police inspector from Kopri police station. Kalbande claimed they have also recovered 26 tola gold from the three and also found some equipment which they used for house break-ins.

Attempting the robbery
Around 2.30 am on Friday, the three robbers entered flat number 302 of Kaleshwar Ashish Society in Thane. “The complainant, businessman Vivek Kubal’s (45) was locked since Kubal, his brother Sachin and his parents were in Goa. Taking advantage of this, the robbers entered the flat and started their work,” said VN. Mudawadkar, Police Sub-Inspector, Kopri Police station.

At around 2:36am, Bhushan Maruti Bide (33), an alert citizen from the neighboring building, saw that the lights of Kubal’s flight were switched on. Bide noticed some people moving in the flat. He got suspicious and called the police control room.

Cops break in
“We were present in the Anand Nagar Beat Chowky, located at a distance of two minutes, when we received a call from the control room.” Mudwadkar said, adding, “We reached the spot and found some youngsters who had gathered there. With a service revolver in hand, we went to the third floor. As soon we opened the door, one of the robbers pushed us and fled inside the house, closing other doors.”

Mudawadkar who was with a team of five policemen and more than 10 youngsters from the society, then informed the control room, asking for more cops. “More than 20 policemen from Shrinagar, Wagle Estate and DCP Squad then reached the spot and we covered the building from the ground,” Mudawadkar added.

The robbers quit their idea of burgling the house and broke the glass window of the bathroom. They started climbing the pipes from the third floor and reached the terrace of the four-storey building.

“Our policemen on the ground floor informed us about their movement and we reached the terrace. It was dark and quiet, so we started looking for them with a flashlight. We found Ganesh and Sanbabu hiding in the water tank. We found Sachin hiding on the umbrella antenna of the building. He was not ready to come down, so we assured him that we would release him soon. We called him down and later, arrested him. The total operation went on for around 30 minutes,” added Mudawadkar.

Search on for kingpin
The accused have a history of committing crimes. The Kopri police had received calls from Mumbai Police for their custody. “During the investigations, we found that Ganesh is wanted since more than 2 years and his MCOCA procedure is going on, but since he was at large, it got delayed. We also found that they work for some woman in Mumbai, who is their kingpin and our search for her is on. In the past, the accused have assaulted many officers and doctors during the robberies,” Kalbande added.

The Kopri police have registered a case against the three under Sections 457 (lurking house-trespass or housebreaking by night), 380 (theft in dwelling house) and 34 (common intention) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

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