Sweater turns the heat on burglar


Garment helps police arrest Jharkhand native who stole valuables worth ₹39 lakh from former employer’s house in Thane

It might have been the perfect crime had the accused not worn a sweater that he was known to own.

The Chitalsar police in Thane have arrested a Jharkhand native who allegedly stole valuables worth ₹39 lakh from his former employer’s Thane residence to fund his daughter’s wedding earlier this month.

The case was cracked within three days of it being reported to the police based on the finding that the sweater worn by the burglar belonged to the accused.

According to the Chitalsar police, the accused has been identified as Hiralal Gorain, a native of Bokaro in Jharkhand. The accused was a domestic help at the residence of Radharaman Tripathi, a retired Income Tax officer who now works as a income tax consultant, in Hiranandani Meadows.

The police said on October 29, Mr. Tripathi and his wife left for Hrishikesh as part of an annual trip during Chhath Puja. The couple returned on November 6 and four days later found that gold jewellery and cash were missing from the locker in their bedroom. They then filed a complaint with the Chitalsar police on November 15.

Senior police inspector Jitendra Rathod, Chitalsar police station, said, “We viewed the CCTV camera footage of the building and saw a man wearing a sweater and a muffler leave the Tripathi residence on November 1. Some other servants employed by the Tripathis told us that Mr. Gorain, who had quit his job in June, had been seen wearing the same sweater. We made further inquiries and one of the servants told us that Mr. Gorain had called him on October 29 to ask if the Tripathis had left for Hrishikesh.”

The police sent a team to Bokaro to visit Mr. Gorain’s residence and the team found him preparing for his daughter’s marriage. Even though the police confronted him with the evidence, he refused to admit to the crime. The police could not find the stolen gold anywhere in his house despite conducting an exhaustive search.

The police wanted to quickly wrap up the case as the Assembly elections were under way in Jharkhand at the time and the atmosphere was sensitive. Mr. Rathod said, “The Borako police extended every possible assistance in the investigation despite the added workload of the Assembly elections, making speedy detection and recovery possible.”

An officer who was part of the team said, “Finally, we sat Mr. Gorain down and told him that we would get Mr. Tripathi to drop the charges if he cooperated with us. We stressed on the fact that this would only happen if Mr. Tripathi got his belongings back. Seeing the opportunity to avoid disgrace ahead of his daughter’s marriage, Mr. Gorain led us to the spot in his courtyard where he had buried the jewellery. He also admitted to having spent around ₹40,000 in cash.”

Mr. Gorain was then arrested and produced in a local court, which granted him transit custody. The accused was brought to Thane on Wednesday night and produced in the Thane court on Thursday. He has been remanded in police custody till November 27.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 2:24:20 AM |

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