Thursday, November 26, 2009

STF nabs five arms suppliers

Alok Mishra, TNN 27 November 2009,

PATNA: In another major breakthrough, Bihar police on Thursday busted an inter-state gang of arms suppliers by arresting five of its members from Special Task Force (STF) personnel, in civvies, also seized one AK-47 rifle, its two magazine, one hand grenade and 28 live cartridges from them. IG (operations) K S Dwivedi said the STF would hand over the arrested persons to the Patna police after initial interrogation.

The arrested criminals have been identified as Ganesh Kumar and Narendra Singh of Hilsa and Pintu Kumar, Pintu Kumar Gupta and Uttam Kumar whose addresses have yet to be ascertained.

Acting on a tip-off, the IG (operations) had constituted an STF team to crack down on the gang a fortnight back. STF SP Prakash Kumar Sinha said his men went to Bakhtiarpur and contacted the gang, posing as customers interested in buying some sophisticated weapons and ammunition. While five were netted, one Dilip Singh managed to escape.

“We are probing if the gang had links with outlawed Maoists,” Sinha said and added all the arrested persons had criminals antecedents and one of them, Ganesh, was arrested earlier too for trading in small weapons.

Sources said the gang members initially asked the STF men to reach Begusarai. They then changed the venue of negotiations to Ranchi. On Thursday, the gang members asked the STF men to come to Bakhtiarpur instead.

The arrested gangsters are learned to have told interrogators that they sold an AK-47 rifle and a carbine to customers in Jharkhand recently. Ganesh was in jail for four years in connection with a murder case.

Earlier this month Patna police seized a rich haul of explosives besides sophisticated rifles and cartridges from Patna and Gaya in Bihar and Bokaro in Jharkhand. In this connection, police also arrested Subodh Singh and his wife from a house at Patna’s Ramnagari from where too one pistol, 650 rounds of cartridges, SIM cards, fake driving licenses, PAN cards and Maoist literature were seized.

On the basis of Singh’s statement, police raided a house in F-sector in Patna’s Kankerbagh area from where three sophisticated rifles, 720 live cartridges, CDs and Naxal literature were seized.

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