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Updated: September 16, 2010 02:15 IST

ATM theft case solved

Staff Reporter
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Commissioner of Police T. Rajendran inspects the cash recovered from the four arrested in the ATM theft case, at his office in Egmore on Wednesday. Photo: S. Thanthoni
The Hindu Commissioner of Police T. Rajendran inspects the cash recovered from the four arrested in the ATM theft case, at his office in Egmore on Wednesday. Photo: S. Thanthoni

The case involving theft of Rs.20.7 lakh from an automated teller machine (ATM) in Thoraipakkam on Saturday has been solved, Commissioner of Police T. Rajendran told mediapersons at his office in Egmore on Wednesday.

The Thoraipakkam police on Tuesday arrested four men in connection with the case, including two who were employees of the security firm hired by the bank to load cash in the ATM.

“The accused were familiar with the operations of the ATM, including the secret code to open the money lockers in it. We are searching for another accused in the case,” Mr. Rajendran said.

Police sources said the accused, Haji Mohammed (27) of Vandavasi and Marimuthu (27) of Vettuvankeni, both employees of Security Trans India Pvt. Ltd., had loaded cash on Friday afternoon along with other co-workers.

The duo hatched a plan and returned around 3 a.m. on Saturday with three more accomplices - Babu (32) of Vandavasi and Rajesh (30) and Ayyappan (28) of Puducherry.

While Marimuthu covered the still camera on the ATM with a tape, Haji opened the ATM and the gang took out Rs.20.7 lakh and fled, sources added.

The police team formed to investigate the case questioned several people, including those from the security agency. During questioning Haji Mohammed confessed to having committed the crime and led the police to Marimuthu, Rajesh and Ayyappan.

A total of Rs.20.6 lakh was recovered from the four men. Babu, who is Haji's relative, is absconding.

Haji, along with three others, had also stolen Rs.5.06 lakh from an ATM in Kelambakkam in August 2009 in a similar fashion. The case is under investigation, police sources said.

Mr. Rajendran also said that security measures at many ATM kiosks of banks are not up to the desired level. Despite the police insisting on improvements, the ATM security remains incomplete, he said.

The police would soon take up the issue with the banks, particularly private banks. The police have also asked the Reserve Bank of India to convene a meeting with representatives of all banks to discuss security measures.

Mr. Rajendran expressed displeasure over some banks providing net banking facilities to all customers by default.

“This leads to phishing as some customers are not Internet savvy,” he said.

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