The Mumbai Police have invoked the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) against the eight accused, arrested in the Jyotirmoy Dey murder case. “Yes. We have applied the MCOCA in the case today [Friday]. All the eight accused were produced in the special MCOCA court. The court extended their police remand till July 11,” Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Himanshu Roy said at a press conference here.
He said the stringent provisions of the Act would help the police in the conviction of the accused. Dey, a senior crime reporter with MiD Day here, was shot dead on June 11 in broad daylight.
“The MCOCA can be applied if any one of the accused has at least two previous charge sheets filed against him in the last 10 years. In this case, there are at least two charge sheets against three accused — Satish Kalya, Vinod Chembur and Chhota Rajan. Chhota Rajan has been shown as a wanted accused in this case,” Mr. Roy told The Hindu.
The police arrested seven persons on June 27: Rohee Thangappan Joseph alias Satish Kalya (34), Abhijeet Kasharam Shinde (28), Arun Janardan Dake (27), Sachin Suresh Gaikwad (27), Anil Bhanudas Waghmode (35), Nilesh Narayan Shedge alias Bablu (34) and Mangesh Damodar Agawane (25).
Kalya was alleged to be the mastermind who planned the killing and shot Dey, at the behest of Chhota Rajan. He is a known sharpshooter and had a criminal record, the police said.
The police later arrested Vinod Asrani alias Vinod Chembur on July 2. Chembur, a bookie and builder, is believed to be a close aide and financier of Chhota Rajan. He had a meeting with Dey on June 7, just four days before Dey was shot dead. The meeting is now believed to hold crucial leads in the case.
Now that all these eight accused have been booked under the MCOCA, the police will have advantages in securing the conviction of the accused.
Under the Act, the statement of the accused, recorded before an officer of the rank of Deputy Commissioner of Police or above, can be taken as evidence.
“Also, it is difficult to get bail in MCOCA cases. The police will have to prove pecuniary gains in the case. They have already said that the accused were given Rs.5 lakh for the killing. Also, the appreciation of electronic evidence is very different in the MCOCA. It is assumed to be true,” Mr. Roy said earlier when the police were yet to apply the MCOCA.
Two held for driver's murder
In another development, the Mumbai police on Friday arrested two persons, suspected to be involved in the killing of the driver of Dawood Ibrahim's brother Iqbal Kaskar in May this year. One of them is a wanted shooter of the Chhota Rajan gang, Sheikh Umed-ur-Rehman Ishrat Hussain (27), who has many serious offences registered against him.
“The Crime Branch Property Cell and Unit VI were successful in nabbing Umed. He was picked up from Goa yesterday [on Thursday],” Joint Commissioner (Crime) Himanshu Roy told journalists.
Iqbal Kaskar's driver, Arif Sayyed (44), was shot dead on May 17 on Pakmodia Street, a stronghold of the fugitive gangster Dawood' family, by two persons who were arrested by the police the same night.
Mr. Roy said the police also arrested Umed's associate Asif Sheikh Chand Mohammad (42) and recovered 11 cellphones from the duo. The two were believed to have run away from Mumbai within two days of the crime.