Maha police track stolen ATM cash van, nab 3 with Rs 4.22 cr

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Mumbai, Nov 18 (IANS) The Maharashtra Police have recovered a hijacked ATM cash van and recovered most of the stolen money besides nabbing three persons for the crime, officials said here.
According to the Mira-Bhayander-Vasai-Virar Police Commissionerate, the cash van belonging to Ryder Business Co was hijacked on Diwali-eve from near the Kotak Mahindra Bank ATM in Bolinge village in Palghar district at around 5 p.m. on November 12.
The incident took place after the vehicle driver fled with the van under the pretext of parking it after the manager, loader and armed bodyguard got off to unload the cash boxes.
As he did not return for quite some time, they made frantic calls to the driver who had switched off his mobile, following which a police complaint was lodged.
At that time, the van was carrying Rs 4.30 crore in various currency denominations. The incident sent shockwaves in the banking and security circles.
The MBVV Police Commissionerate alerted the Police Commissioners of Mumbai, Thane, Palghar and the DG Control, which put up road blockades in all these districts.
Besides, the MBCC Police Commissionerate set up special teams to solve the crime and one team from the Arnala Coastal Police finally tracked down the unattended van parked near Bhiwandi town in adjoining Thane district.
Since the cash van had special security features, the bank and company officials were summoned to help open it.
The police recovered almost half the amount as the driver fled with the remaining Rs 1.91 crore in Rs 500 note bundles.
Using field sources and tech-intel, the police finally zeroed in on the accused van driver, Akshay P. Mohite, 24, and arrested him from Navi Mumbai.
He led the police to his accomplices, namely Rohit Babban Aru, 26, in Ahmednagar, and Chandrakant G. Gaikwad, 41, in Beed Navi Mumbai, said the police.
So far, the police have recovered a total Rs 4.22 crore from the accused and have seized the van, a getaway motorcycle, mobile phones and other articles worth Rs650,000 from their possession.
The cash van had started on its journey with Rs 4.58 crore of which it deposited different amounts totaling to Rs 28 lakh in 3 ATMs before the hijack was carried out.

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