Mumbai: 2 ATM thieves arrested


MUMBAI: Two ATM thieves who flew from Delhi to Mumbai have been arrested from Mira Road. Gagankumar Nirmal (32) and Sonukumar Shyamsingh (28) are believed to have cheated bank customers by stealing their ATM cards in Mumbai, Thane, Navi Mumbai and across the country.

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According to the Naya Nagar police, their modus operandi is to find an ATM kiosk and place plastic chips on each of the 10 digits of the keypad. They target kiosks that have two machines. While one of them stands in front of the non-tampered machine, the other waits outside. When a customer enters the kiosk and tries to withdraw cash from the tampered machine, the buttons don't press (due to the plastic coating). 

The suspect waiting outside enters the kiosk and insist that the machine is not working. They offer to help the customer who inserts the card in the machine and types the PIN. What the customers does not know is that the PIN has been copied on the chip placed on top of the ATMs keyboard.

The customer is then told to withdraw cash from the other machine (which has not been tampered with). After withdrawing cash they get into a conversation with the visibly happy customer and end up exchanging his card for an expired one. With the PIN captured on their chip, they withdraw cash and do online shopping on the spot using their cellphones. Police said that they even memorise the PIN when the customer presses the buttons.

On September 9, the two were found roaming suspiciously near Payyade Residency hotel on the Mira-Bhayander road. The cops on duty picked them up for questioning. The police found 21 silver colour plastic chips and 11 credit/debit cards from them. On questioning they disclosed their modus operandi.

Gagankumar, a resident of Baprola Vihar in Delhi and Sonukumar from Khanpur in Delhi told the police that they travel to various destinations for ATM thefts. With their arrest six cases registered with the Naya Nagar police station have been cracked. A few closed circuit television (CCTV) images of the two entering kiosks in Mira Road have also been retrieved by the police.

Since the last one year, the two have been targeting ATMs in Mumbai, Thane and Navi Mumbai. Police said that the two are likely to have carried out thefts in ATMs in other parts of the country as well. They have splurged the stolen money on I Phones and laptops. They have been remanded to police custody.

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