In a major catch, the Madurai district police solved as many as 12 cases of chain snatching and arrested three persons here on Tuesday.
Following a number of snatching crimes reported in Koodal Pudur, Nagamalai Pudukottai, Samayanallur, Vadipatti and among other locations, Superintendent of Police Vijayendra Bidari had formed a special team.
After examining the modus operandi of the crimes, the special team was on the lookout for a few suspects.
Two days ago, when the team received a specific input, they went to the spot and secured the suspects from a hideout on the Samanar Hills.
Based on the confession from B. Shankar (24), V. Kannan (32) of Kuruvithurai and M. Vijaykumar (24) of Kochadai, the special team recovered 36.5 sovereigns of gold jewels, which were allegedly snatched from women from different locations in the recent past.
The police officers, who investigated the crimes, found that the suspects had figured in similar crimes in the district and neighbouring pockets as well.
The modus operandi was to target women walking alone in an area.
After watching their movements for some time, the robbers attacked them and escaped with the booty.
The vulnerable locations in each sub-division had been identified and vigil would be stepped up, police officers said and added that as part of preventing crimes, two-wheeler patrol beats had been engaged in narrow lanes and congested pockets.
The public should not engage strangers, who approached them under the guise of inquiring an address.
In the event of any offences, an early call to the police control room would be helpful in swiftly securing the robbers, they added.