The 4-member gang had stolen the computers worth Rs. 4.5 crore from the warehouse of the distributor in Chennai
Five days after over 1,500 laptops and desktops disappeared from a warehouse, police on Monday managed to nab the four-member gang responsible, including the driver of the lorry which transported the devices.
The systems were last seen at the warehouse of Lenovo distributor Shankar India Warehouse Company on Manjambakkam Road in Madhavaram. The culprits were arrested in Renigunta, around 130 km from Chennai, by the city police.
“We secured the entire consignment of computers including those laptops that were taken by the accused as sample pieces to Andhra Pradesh to prospective buyers. The worth of secured consignment is around Rs 4.5 crore,” said a senior police officer.
The consignment was recovered from a warehouse in Puzhal. The gang comprised S. Radhakrishnan (35), the driver, K. Ethiraj (36), a commission agent at Chennai port and an associate of Radhakrishnan, S. Ponnuswamy (60), the owner of the warehouse at Puzhal and B. Kuppan (35), a friend of Ethiraj. Two special teams led by Madhavaram Milk Colony inspectors M. Kasiappan (Law & Order), and S. Gopinath (Crime) zeroed in on the culprits based on clues obtained from the interrogation of the driver’s friends and relatives.
The police team also tracked the signals from the mobile phones of the accused to identity their location. Radhakrishnan had on Thursday abandoned the lorry in Alamathi on the Red Hills – Tiruvallur High Road.
The computers were part of a consignment of 6,120 systems worth Rs. 11 crore that was being transported in three lorries from Chennai port. The computers arrived in Chennai by sea from Shanghai on Wednesday.
Police sources said that the Indev Logistics Private Limited, the logistics firm for Lenovo products, had employed a sub-contractor for transporting the computers from Chennai port to the warehouse.
On Wednesday, the driver usually employed by S. Karthik, the sub-contractor, was absent. So he requested a friend to lend a lorry. Radhakrishnan was the driver of that lorry. He had joined the firm run by Karthik’s friend only a fortnight ago and had not furnished his licence to the lorry owner yet. The postal address provided by him as proof of residence also turned out to be fake.
Indev Logistics sources said that Ethiraj, who was a commission agent at the port, had access to information regarding the arrival and value of various consignments. He also managed to find buyers.