Cops to rope in pawnbrokers to check chain-snatching

Cops to rope in pawnbrokers to check chain-snatching

The police have drawn up an action plan to check the rising number of chain-snatching cases—highest in the last 10 years—in the City.

Additional Commissioner of Police (Crime) P Harishekaran has conducted an analysis of chain-snatching cases and also prepared a report on the action to be taken with immediate effect.

According to the report, the police have to ensure that  pawnbrokers maintain a register of their customers with details such as proof of their address, identity and photograph. Besides, the person pawning ornaments should be introduced to the pawnbroker by a local resident. The pawnbrokers will have to submit the copy of the register to the jurisdictional police station once a week, as per the Pawnbrokers Act.

“This apart, I have directed the jurisdictional police to prepare a list of registered and unregistered pawnbrokers. The police will also hold meeting with pawnbrokers, advocates and a few victims,” Harishekaran said.

Since it has come to light that a majority of chain snatchers come on vehicles with fake number plates, the police have also been asked to prepare a database of people who are into the business of making numberplate stickers or painting. The customers will have to produce a photocopy of the vehicle document before getting the numberplate ready.

Accused return to crime

The report suggests that chain-snatching had become a daily crime at all the police sub-divisions in the City. The cases have doubled since 2005 and have been increasing with every passing year.

The statistics  also show that 30 per cent to 40 per cent of the suspects arrested for chain-snatching, take to the crime after release from jail.

The City recorded 195 cases of chain-snatching in 2005 and it is 421 till October 2014.
“Till 2006, chain-snatching was considered to be a petty offence. However, today it has become a social evil and there are incidents of women being involved, too.

The report, with a plan of action, has been dispatched to all police stations, sub-divisions and divisions. We will prepare a database of the known accused with their address and jurisdiction. The list will also include offenders from outside the State. The police will also prepare a database of people who have a history of receiving stolen jewellery,” Harishekaran told Deccan Herald.

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