Mumbai: Passenger, officer nab gang of thieves at T2

A passenger and security guard at the Terminal 2 (T2) of the international airport nabbed a group of criminals, on Thursday, who duped passengers by pretending to be from the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI). 

The gang of three and its ring leader, who operated under the fake name Ashish Sharma, carried fake identity cards and looted passengers’ valuables before running away. The passenger, Fareed Ali Rahamatulla Mohammad Ali, caught them in the act, with the help of a security guard.

 Ashish Sharma

The gang was nabbed and handed over to Sahar Police. According to Ali’s complaint, the gang stole his 100 gram gold biscuit, chain, ring and dirhams. Two criminals from the gang are still absconding.

The incident
Ali, who hails from Karnataka, was about to leave the arrivals lounge at T2, after arriving from Abu Dhabi, when he was stopped by a man who introduced himself as Karamshetty Ashok Sharma, a DRI official. Sharma claimed that he needed to check Ali’s luggage and later insisted that he had to claim his valuables at the customs. Sharma, then, called two other members of the gang and introduced them as custom officials to whom Ali had to hand over his valuables. The passenger handed over the same to the men, who immediately left the spot. Later, Sharma bribed a security official with R500, and asked him to ensure that Ali does not follow him. This set off alarm bells in the security guard’s mind and he questioned Sharma who, in turn, produced the fake DRI identity card. A confused Ali, too, reached the spot and he, along with the security guard approached a Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) official and complained to him. Together, they managed to nab Sharma.

When questioned initially, the criminal reiterated his claim that he is a DRI officer but later admitted to carrying a fake ID which bore the name Deputy Director Ashok Sharma. He was carrying a fake Aadhar card as well. The thieves were, reportedly, residing in a lodge at Masjid Bundar.

Speaking to Sunday mid-day Ali said, “I am a rickshaw driver in Karnataka and visited Abu Dhabi to meet my brother. I had to miss my bus to my hometown as I had to spend the whole day at the Sahar Police Station. My valuables are still with the absconding criminals and I hope that the local police will find them soon.”

Official speak
Prashant Marde, senior police inspector, Sahar Police Station, said, “The case is under investigation and hence I can’t reveal the names of the two partners who are absconding. We are trying our best to catch hold of them. However, a First Information Report (FIR) has been registered under the IPC Sections 370, 420 and 34.”

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