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Eight shops burgled in Zakher Mall.

Muscat: In a shocking and daring incident, at least eight shops in Zakher Mall, one of the largest shopping malls in the capital's Al Khuwair area, were burgled during the wee hours of Sunday.

According to sources, the burglar (s) entered the mall after breaking open the glass panes of a furniture shop on the right side of the mall.

"A cosmetic shop, a furniture showroom, a cafEa and a photo studio have reportedly lost money and some goods," sources told Times of Oman.

However, the burglar (s) only damaged the glass panes of some of the shops and dropped the burglary attempt later.

Alarm bell

"We had installed burglar alarm in our shop. So, it seems that after the miscreant broke open the glass panes, the alarm might have started to ring and he might have dropped his plans," sources said.

According to the visuals recorded by a CCTV camera installed at a jewelery shop, the burglary happened between 5am and 6am.

"The recorded visuals show that our shop's glass panes were broken at around 5:47am. The suspect was wearing a white T-shirt and denim trousers. He was sporting a beard and was wearing spectacles. The police officials have taken the visuals,"

sources said.

Meanwhile, the mall manager told Times of Oman that only glass panes of the shops were damaged and said he was not in a position to comment on the incident as the police are investigating the case.

"We were on duty till 11:30pm on Saturday. When we came to the mall yesterday by 7am, we found that the glass planes were broken. So, we called our officials and informed the police," mall workers said.

The mall opens daily from 9:30am to 1pm and from 4:30pm till 9:30pm during the week days (Saturday to Thursday) and from 4:30pm to 9:30pm on Fridays.

Yesterday, as part of the ongoing police probe, the mall was closed and a "no entry" notice was seen placed at the entrance.

Meanwhile, fingerprint experts from the police department have collected evidence from the crime scene. As an electricity/water bill collection centre was operating in the mall, people were seen coming to the mall to pay bills and returning after being denied entry as part of the probe.

"I came to check my latest electricity bill but as the mall is closed, I have to return now," a customer said.

Zakher Mall is considered one of the largest shopping malls in Al Khuwair area with a total space of 17,500 square meters of shops and offices. It attracts, on an average, 1,300 visitors a day on weekdays and more during weekends.

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Publication:Times of Oman (Muscat, Oman)
Date:May 21, 2012
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