Stealthy gang slips on a banana peel

Accused confronted by locals while trading in stolen fruits

For many months now, plantain farmers in Angamaly and nearby areas have been engaged in a zero-sum game with a gang who landed stealthily on their farms and spirited away their crops.

With every successful theft, they grew confident, leading to their eventual downfall when they were intercepted by the local public while trying to sell the stolen bunch of bananas in broad daylight on Wednesday.

The Angamaly police who rushed to the scene and took the gang members into custody were in for a surprise when they realised that two of the four-member gang were juveniles, and that one of them was a ring leader of sorts.

The other two arrested were identified as Godwin, 19, and Emin, 18.

“They went for theft either in group or individually, and their modus operandi was rather simple. They would roam around on a two-wheeler and on zeroing in on an ideal location, cut bunches of bananas using axo blade and drove away even in broad daylight,” said Sony Mathai, Sub Inspector, Angamaly.

Mostly half-harvested farms were chosen since the loss of bananas was likely to go unnoticed. Though stolen, the gang never compromised on the price while selling the bananas, and the proceeds went into leading a lavish life, the police said. A case was registered invoking IPC Section 379 (theft), and the accused were released on bail.

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Printable version | Apr 2, 2020 2:17:40 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/stealthy-gang-slips-on-a-banana-peel/article25792673.ece

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