The Chhattisgarh resident used to target temples in AP to steal the gold and silver ornaments offered by devotees.
A team from CCS Malkajgiri arrested a 35-year-old resident of Chhattisgarh who was involved in a series of temple burglaries in Hyderabad, Cyberabad and other parts of the State in the past few years. The police expect to recover large amounts of stolen gold jewellery from the accused and investigation is on.
The accused, Sahu, was arrested after targeting a jewellery shop in Malkajgiri. He broke in using a gas cutter, but the owner of the shop had taken the gold jewellery away with him. On finding only silver jewellery, Sahu was upset and waited on the footpath for the police. When he was taken into custody, he confessed his burglaries.
Sahu stated that he had been involved in 40-50 temple burglaries in the past eight to 10 years in AP. He reportedly told the investigators: “I was arrested for my involvement in a temple burglary in Vijayawada a few years back. Once I got out of prison, I decided to target only temples and started stealing gold and silver ornaments from the temples.”
The police believed that with the arrest of Sahu, they would get some leads into the recent spate of temple burglaries in the City. However, the accused denied any knowledge of these thefts. According to him, he never planned to target Old City temples nor was he involved in the burglaries because he knew that people from minority communities might be blamed and this might spark off violence.
When questioned, the Chhattisgarh resident told investigators that he targeted temples in AP because devotees often gifted gold and silver ornaments to temples. In other parts of the country, Sahu said, bronze ornaments are usually given.
Sahu is a habitual offender and is addicted to the lottery. Usually, after committing a theft, he would head to Mumbai to sell the jewellery and then use the money to try his luck at the lottery. He confessed that he has property worth nearly Rs.90 lakh in Mumbai. Sahu’s sisters had filed a habeas corpus in the High Court because he had been illegally detained for the past few days. A police officer said that so far, they have discovered that Sahu was involved in burglaries in Banjara Hills, Malkajgiri and Kukatpally.
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