After his acting skills failed to guarantee him plump assignments in Bollywood so that he could rub shoulders with biggies in the film industry, 52-year-old Paresh Natwarlal Thakker, a small-time actor, used his talent to pull off con jobs in the city, in which he would cheat shop owners. But Thakker ran out of luck after officials from the Khar police station arrested him from Zamzam hotel in Dongri on Friday.
API Navnath Sonawane of the Khar police station said, “Thakker has conned several retailers. He is a native of Gujarat. After staying with his relative in Nagpur, he started looking for work in Bollywood. But when he failed to bag big assignments despite working for more than three years in the film industry, he used his talent to execute illegal acts.”
Explaining Thakker’s tactics, Sonawne said he used to visit retail shops in the city dressed like a businessman and pick up goods of his choice. He would then tell the shop owner that since he was low on cash, the owner could send any of his employees with him to his office to collect the money. He would take the employee to a building in Girgaum and would ask him to wait while he got the money.
“While the unsuspecting shop employee would wait for Thakker’s return, he would make away with the goods through the back door,” Sonawane said. Officials said there were several cases of cheating registered against Thakker in Colaba, MRA, D B Nagar and many other police stations in the city. They even revealed that Thakker had spent 14 months behind bars.
What led to Thakker’s arrest was the compliant registered by the owner of Vishal Telecom Shop at the Khar police station. Thakker was arrested with the help of the CCTV footage that the police officials recovered from the shop, following a tip-off that the suspect was roaming freely in Dongri.
Sonawane said, “We launched a manhunt for the accused in Dongri and later came to know that he was staying in Zamzam hotel. We laid a trap and arrested Thakker from the hotel.” Thakker was booked under Section 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) of the Indian Penal Code. He was later produced in the Bandra Court and has been remanded in police custody till tomorrow.