New Delhi: Three persons, including a woman, were arrested for allegedly stealing bags and valuables from wedding parties at upscale venues, the police said on Thursday.
In the last few months, several cases of thefts from wedding ceremonies, held at five star hotels, banquet halls and farmhouses in the national capital region, were reported. It was suspected that children were deployed for the crimes, they said.
The gang members used to dress up in wedding finery, so that they could mix with the crowd. CCTV footage could not identify the accused, the police said.
The accused, members of 'Raja Dadaa' gang, has committed more than 15 thefts from various wedding venues. They used to recruit juveniles who are trained to steal bags, and hailed from Madhya Pradesh, a police official said.
On March 8, Raj Kumar alias Dadaa (42), the kingpin of the gang, Reema alias Dakhan (30) and Bhupender Sharma (35) were arrested from
Paharganj near the New Delhi Railway Station, Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Alok Kumar said.
During interrogation, the accused revealed that Reema Bai used to train juveniles for stealing valuables. She was paid Rs 60,000-80,000 for it. As the leader of the gang, Raj Kumar used to identify potential recruits and enter into a contract with the family for 'renting' the child, he said.
The juveniles were kept in posh areas as part of their training and were trained to dress well and eat with knife and fork, Kumar said.
Once trained, the juveniles were then sent to wedding ceremonies in five star hotels and high-profile venues where they used to mingle with the crowd, identify bags that have cash and jewellery, and steal them, he said, adding the gang had employed lawyers in several states.
Bhupender Sharma used to work as a driver for a cab aggregator and his vehicle was used by the gang members for going to the venues, the police said.