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Seven arrested for stealing from bank.

Following complaints at police stations in Ruwi, Wattayah, Bausher, Seeb and Al Khoud, the Royal Oman Police (ROP) initiated thorough investigations and managed to foil a number of attempts to rob bank customers. In most cases, the alleged thieves followed their victim after he left the bank and parked his car somewhere. They then smashed open windows of the vehicle and fled away with the money.

Considering the magnitude of these cases, it was a big achievement for the ROP to arrest the alleged criminals within a specific period of time.

In one particular case, the investigation team managed to identify three culprits, H.A.B, M.R and M.S (from an Arab country), who were involved in stealing money from the vehicle of an Asian resident after breaking its windows while it was parked near a shopping mall in Qurm on June 24.

The culprits followed the victim after he left a bank in a rented car. One of the culprits followed the victim to the mall to ensure that he did not return till the second culprit managed to steal the money. The third culprit, however, remained in the car to ensure a speedy escape for the robbers.

Two of the culprits were arrested at the Muscat International Airport the very next day after they committed the crime. The ROP, on a tip-off, checked the list of passengers travelling by a particular flight, and found the names of these culprits. They also found that one passenger of the same nationality did not leave the country though his baggage was checked in. The third accused was arrested on June 29 from a shopping mall in Muscat. After identifying the culprits, the ROP referred them to the office of the public prosecutor.

They confessed and provided details of their modus operandi after being confronted with concrete evidence and statements by the victim. They also gave details of the money in their possession. The concerned court sentenced the culprits to three years in jail and fined them RO5,000. They were also asked to return the stolen money to the victim. The accused will be deported from Oman at the end of their jail term.

In a similar case, the anti-crime unit managed to arrest the accused H.S.F. and K.A.F (both holding passports of an Arab country) while they were trying to steal money from a parked vehicle.

Meanwhile in Seeb, the anti-crime unit arrested S.B. and S.J.F.S of Latin American nationality on July 2. These criminals adopted the same pattern of following a bank customer, breaking car windows, deflating tyres and stealing money. The culprits confessed their crime and were referred to the court.

The ROP said that through its quick response, it has been able to tackle new tactics deployed by these foreign criminals. The ROP has in the meanwhile urged the public to be careful and not leave money and other valuables unattended in their cars.

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Publication:The Week (Muscat, Oman)
Date:Aug 6, 2009
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