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Salin bin Perwaiz
Friday, April 15, 2011
From Print Edition
 
 

 

Karachi

 

In the city’s biggest bank robbery of the current year, Six armed men, including a security guard, robbed a local bank which lies within the Kharadar police limits on Thursday morning and got away with around Rs9 million.

 

Investigators looking into this robbery believed that a group of criminals from Chakwal were involved in this offence. The police also took possession of the video footage recorded by the bank’s CCTV cameras and released sketches of the fleeing suspects.

 

The law enforcers said that on Thursday morning, they received information that the Muslim Commercial Bank’s Jorria bazaar branch in Kharadar had been robbed. Police teams, including personnel of the Special Investigation Unit (SIU) Karachi reached the spot to conduct their investigations.

 

The investigators said that when they reached the scene of the crime, they discovered that Anwer Ali, the guard of a private security company and five other accomplices were involved in the theft which robbed the local bank of Rs9 million. After committing the offence, the suspects snatched the cell phones of bank employees and fled on their motorcycles. The Chief of the SIU, SSP Raja Umer Khattab told The News that the security guard had been recruited by a private security company this year and was posted to the MCB branch in February.

 

He added that on Thursday morning, the accused guard reached the bank at 6:30 to relieve the night watchman. Afterwards, he called five other accomplices who waited for the bank staff to arrive.

 

When the relevant staff members reached their workplace, the robbers caught a hold of the men and women and tied them up with ropes. The staff members were then locked into a single room along with the other on-duty security guard.

 

While this was taking place, the Manager of Operations for the branch walked into the premises. The robbers held the manager at gunpoint and forced him to open the vault as he had possession of the keys. They proceeded to fill their bags with cash worth Rs9 million and then snatched the keys of a motorcycle belonging to a bank staff member as well as the cell phones of others.

 

Khattab said that although the bank staff had pressed a button to alert the private security company, it failed to respond to the situation. He added that the area manager of the security company had been asked to come to the bank following the robbery, but he failed to reach the branch until 1:00pm.

 

A team of the SIU went across to the office of the security company and demanded to see its, including data of the guard suspected to have had a hand in the robbery. SSP Khattab said that according to the company’s records, the guard was born in 1971. The address mentioned on the form was that of quarters which had been provided by the security company to its guards. These quarters were located in the Akhtar Colony of Mehmoodabad.

 

Personnel from the SIU raided the spot only to discover that the guard only lived in the quarter for a week during the month of February. The others guard who were residing in the colony said that the suspect, Anwer Ali, had not returned to the area since.

 

SSP Khattab said that the company had no information regarding the current address of the accused. According to the records, Anwer Ali’s hailed from Chakwal. However, the police discovered that both guarantors of the security guard turned out to be false. The police managed to trace down one of the guarantors, who told them that he had no affiliation with the suspect and that his CNIC number was being misused.

 

Khattab said the law enforcers aired a message on the police radio to reveal the number plates of the motorcycles used by the robbers to flee. He added that a similar type of robbery was carried out at the Tauheed Commercial Area branch of the Allied Bank in Defence.