Two ATM technicians held for swiping machine of Rs 28 lakh in Mumbai

They had managed to commit the robbery without damaging the machine, leading cops to suspect an insider’s hand in the crime

ATM machines. File picture

Two technicians have been arrested for stealing Rs 28 lakh from an ATM in Goregaon. The accused have been on the run since March 10.

According to the police, the theft took place at a State Bank of India ATM booth in SRA camp, Goregaon, near the Western Express Highway. The accused had managed to escape with the loot without damaging the machine, officials said. The bank then lodged a complaint with the Vanrai police station.

While the police had registered a case in the matter, they were finding it difficult to make a breakthrough in the case, as the CCTV inside the ATM booth wasn’t working. The police, however, suspected an insider’s role, as the machine had not been damaged in the incident.

"Only technicians, who feed money into the ATM, are aware of the password to unlock the machine. We then decided to carry out investigations in that direction," an official with the Vanrai police said.

During investigations, the police learnt that the two companies, TISCO and SSC, which were responsible for replenishing the ATM, had recently merged. After the merger, they had removed several staff.

"We asked the telecom company to provide us with data of their existing and previous employees who fed money at the particular ATM," the official added. 

After going through the data, the police arrested Jagdish Patel (34), an ex-employee with TISCO. Patel spilled the beans on the other thief, Ritesh Barge (32), who had been working with SSCM. Both technicians knew the password of the machine, and were aware that the CCTV wasn’t working. "The duo committed the crime because they were upset about being removed from their job," the officer said. The police have recovered around Rs 21.63 lakh from the accused.

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