Jewellery store owner arrested in Chandigarh for faking Rs.14 crore robbery

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Chandigarh, May 10 (IANS) Ten days after the biggest jewellery ‘heist’ in Chandigarh, the city police on Tuesday arrested its owner on charges of faking the day-light robbery.

Chandigarh’s Senior Superintendent of Police Sukhchain Singh Gill told media that ‘Forever Diamonds’ jewellery showroom owner Vinod Verma was arrested on Tuesday after thorough investigations by the Chandigarh Police into the robbery revealed the complicity of the owners.

A staff member of the jewellery showroom told police about the robbery conspiracy following sustained questioning of various people.

More arrests, including Verma’s brother, Rajnish, are likely to be made soon, Gill said.

Verma and his brother had complained to police that jewellery worth Rs.14 crore was looted at gun-point from their showroom in Chandigarh’s commercial hub of Sector 17 on May 1.

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They claimed that the showroom was looted by three people, including a woman, who came there posing as customers.

Gill said that the owners had faked the entire robbery to claim insurance as they were under a Rs.20 crore debt.

“The entire robbery was stage-managed by the owners to claim the Rs.10 crore insurance,” he said.

Police recovered jewellery worth Rs.65 lakh, which was part of the looted jewellery, from a partner of the owner.

Verma, who lives in Panchkula town in Haryana, 15 km from here, had allegedly involved other people in executing the “robbery plan”. He has been booked for cheating, forgery and criminal conspiracy.

Police are conducting raids to arrest Verma’s brother and other accomplices.

The owners had claimed that the robbers, after looting the showroom at gun-point, took away CCTV footage of the shop.

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