Planned for nearly a year, said to have been liberally inspired by the globally hit Netflix show ‘Money Heist’, a bank robbery near Mumbai delivered equally compelling episodes as a series web movies worth watching.
The inside work was resolved with the arrest of five people and the recovery of Rs 12 crore from them, police said this week. They had previously found the Rs 22 coin at ICICI Bank branch in Thane during the investigation of the theft in July this year.
Altaf Shaikh, 43, the main suspect in the case, was arrested and a Rs9 coin was found from him, police said. He used to work as a vault keeper at a bank and planned an elaborate heist. His sister, identified as Neelofer, was also arrested, they said.
“Shaikh, a resident of Mumbra, used to work with ICICI Bank as a custodian. As a custodian, he was the custodian of the bank’s locker keys. He was spent a year planning the theft, researching vulnerabilities in the system and gathering tools, a police officer at the Manpada Police Department said.
During the investigation, police discovered that Shaikh had planned the whole theft by extending the AC conduit to sneak money into the garbage chute and tampering with CCTV footage, he added.
“After disabling the alarm system and sabotaging CCTV, Shaikh opened the bank vault and transferred the cash into the conduit and below into the trough. The incident came to light after the bank noticed it. that the lost security money, as well as the CCTV DVR, prompted their staff to call the inspection team,” the official said.
With the technicians notifying the authorities that the footage was also stored online and realizing his plan had failed, Shaikh fled the scene with around Rs 12 crore. The remaining Rs 22 was discovered under a tarp at the bank.
He spent the next three months on the run, changing his appearance and using a burqa to conceal his identity. Shaikh’s sister Neelofer, who was aware of his movements, had hidden some cash in the house. Police said she was accused of being an accomplice in the case and was arrested. Shaikh was finally arrested from Pune on Monday.