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May 21, 2018

Cellphone-snatching on the rise in Peshawar


May 21, 2018

PESHAWAR: The cellphone-snatching incidents have increased manifold in the provincial capital in recent months as the snatchers have found a new market for the stolen smartphones in Afghanistan.

The mobile phone snatchers riding motorbikes usually prey on lone pedestrians at deserted places in the provincial capital. Those resisting the bid or trying to chase after the snatchers are threatened with guns.

“In recent years, the robbers have stopped snatching cellphones since these could be easily located by using technology.

Even some robbers would throw away the phones after snatching cash and other valuables from people,” a source told The News.

The fear of being traced through technology dissuaded the phone-snatchers from stealing cellphones.

The cellphone snatchers have found a market in Afghanistan where they sell the phones snatched in Peshawar or other city.

These gangs unblock the codes through software and make it usable for new buyers.

“The cellphone-snatching has increased in recent months. In most of the cases, the police don’t bother to register the case and dodge the complainant in a bid to underreport such crimes,” the source said.

The source added the statistics compiled by the capital city police and the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Police didn’t mention such cases.

The capital city police have busted several gangs that were involved in snatching cellphones and other valuables from people.

However, the bulk of the cases are still untraced.

Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Qazi Jamilur Rahman recently expressed concern over the increasing incidents of bike-lifting in Peshawar.

“The CCPO while taking notice of the increasing incidents of bike-lifting directed the subordinate officers to tighten noose against the criminals,” an official handout of the capital city police office recently said.

The city police chief directed the officers to improve law and order during Ramazan and protect the life and property of the people.

The phone-snatching incidents jack up in Ramazan as people roam around the city in late hours.

The cops have been directed to increase patrolling and keep an eye on the movement of suspected elements to check street crimes.