He had stolen a wallet from a passenger on a BEST bus on April 7, and used it to splurge on clothes on the same day
A pickpocket’s penchant for shopping and alert staff at a shopping mall led to his arrest on Friday. Police were able to trace him after he swiped a credit card he had stolen, giving cops clues about his whereabouts.
Aslam Payak was arrested from his Saki Naka residence on Friday
According to police officials, the accused, identified as Aslam Mohammad Wali Payak (31), stole a wallet from the bag of passenger Pravin Rajesh Singh (30) while the latter was dozing in a BEST bus on April 7.
Once he alighted from the bus, Payak proceeded to buy himself and his friend a bottle of beer with the credit card he had found in the wallet. As soon as the card was swiped, Singh received a message. Assistant Police Inspector Kishor Pawar of Kurla police station said, “As soon as he got the message, Singh realised that his wallet had been stolen.
The message indicated that the accused had purchased a bottle of beer from a shop. Singh rushed to the shop and made enquiries. The shopkeeper confirmed that a purchase had been made at the time indicated in the SMS, but didn’t have any leads that could help Singh trace the pickpocket.”
Meanwhile, Payak was not done shopping with his ill-gotten gains. Next, he visited a shopping mall in Kurla and bought himself some clothes, using the credit card to pay for them. “The accused shopped for clothes worth Rs 5,726 and swiped Singh’s card, so we got information that he was at the mall.
After we reached the shopping mall, the employees there said that sensing something was amiss, they had made basic enquiries, but had let the man go eventually. Thankfully, the watchman had clicked a photo of the man while the enquiry was on, and this helped us later,” added Pawar.
The policemen then took the photo of Payak from the mall authorities and circulated it among local informers. Pawar further added, “We got a tip-off that the accused is a resident of Gandhinagar in Saki Naka, after which we laid a trap outside his residence and finally nabbed him on Friday evening.” Payak has been booked under sections 379 (theft) and 419 (cheating by personation) of the Indian Penal Code, along with section 66 (B) of the IT Act.