City Bureau

He was active in the southern suburbs of Chennai since 2001

  • Stole 800 sovereigns of gold jewels
  • Finger prints tally, say police

    CHENNAI: The Madipakkam police of St. Thomas Mount District on Thursday nabbed the elusive bureau puller who had stolen close to 800 sovereigns of gold jewels in the southern suburbs of Chennai and has been in the `wanted list' since 2001.

    The 30-year-old S. Nagamani was nailed by a four-member police team on Thursday evening.

    According to A. Arun, Deputy Commissioner of Police, St. Thomas Mount, Nagamani's print impressions were taken and he was detained at the Madipakkam police station. Experts at the Single Digit Finger Print Bureau of St. Thomas Mount found that they tallied with those of the bureau puller.

    Mr. Arun said Nagamani had struck in 68 houses in the suburban areas of Chennai, mostly at Madipakkam, Adambakkam and Pazhavanthangal.

    Clues lifted from 34 of them were found to be the same and Nagamani's impressions taken on Thursday evening matched with them.

    During interrogation, Nagamani confessed to have committed the crimes, including burglaries of 766 sovereigns of gold and Rs. 75,000 in cash, the officer said.

    After his first strike in July 2001 at a house in Madipakkam, he struck at 22 places the following year, including 13 burglaries in the local police station's jurisdiction. In 2003, he struck in 16 houses and 14 houses the following year.

    Police Commissioner Letika Saran told the press on Friday afternoon that efforts were on to recover the stolen property.

    Employed as light boy

    A native of Ginjee in Tiruvannamalai district, Nagamani was staying in Vadapalani and was employed as a light boy in studios there.

    On the modus operandi, Mr. Arun said Nagamani would choose houses randomly and settle down near the "targets" around 8 p.m. He would start his work around 11 p.m., when the inmates were fast asleep. He used a pen torch and blade and a combination of wooden poles and hooks to pull almirahs.

    The arrest of the elusive bureau puller ends a massive man-hunt which saw several special teams formed, disbanded and re-constituted.

    During investigations, police squads had obtained finger print impressions from at least 1,000 youths attracting criticisms from residents.

    V. Rama Rao, secretary of Lakshmi Nagar Civic Welfare Association in Nanganallur congratulated St. Thomas Mount police district and also personnel of the special teams and hoped that the victims would get back their property at the earliest.

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