Maharashtra: Trader turns burglar after suffering losses; arrested
A 45-year-old cloth trader from Solapur allegedly took to committing burglaries and thefts after suffering losses in his business due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown and was arrested last week in Maharashtra's Solapur city in connection with eight such cases, police said on Wednesday. The accused, identified as Anand Kodam, is a resident of Vajreshwari Nagar in Solapur, which is located about 400km from Mumbai.
He was earlier into his family's cloth business in Solapur
"The accused was nabbed on September 2 when he was on his way to sell some ornaments allegedly stolen by him. Kodam was earlier into his family's cloth business and they used to run a factory in Solapur," a police officer said. In 2018, he parted ways with his family due to some reason and started living separately with his wife and children.
He was allegedly cheated by another businessman last year
"Kodam then started an independent business of sale and purchase of towels, which was running well," the official said. "However, last year, a businessman allegedly cheated him of Rs. 8 lakh, due to which he had to take loans and after a few days, had to shut his business in the wake of the lockdown imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19," he said.
He used to target houses having cast iron locks: Police
After being unable to repay the loans, Kodam allegedly started committing burglaries since August 1 this year, the official said. "His modus operandi was to commit thefts between 11:00 am and 2:00 pm and he used to target houses having cast iron locks which could be broken easily," said Solapur Jail Road Police Station's sub-inspector Alfaz Shaikh, who nabbed the accused.
Police examined footage of at least 100 CCTVs
Shaikh said, "Kodam had allegedly committed at least seven house-breakings in the jurisdiction of the Jail Road police limits." The police examined footage of at least 100 CCTVs in the area, but as the accused wore a mask while committing the offenses, it was difficult to identify him. "However, in one CCTV footage, he was found without the mask and identified," Shaikh said.
He initially told the police about only one theft
The official said that the accused initially told the police that he had committed only one theft, but later, during questioning, he informed about other six burglaries committed by him in the Jail Road area and one in the MIDC (Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation) area.