ATM cash theft: Agencies didn't follow safety norms

ATM cash theft: Agencies didn't follow safety norms

The driver of the MUV, who sped away with Rs 66 lakh cash from City Market on Tuesday, had joined the travel agency only five days ago.

The Tata Sumo belonging to Lakshmi Travels in Bommasnadra had been hired by Brinks India Private Limited (BIPL), the cash replenishment agency.

The travel agency owner Prakash had not even verified the antecedents of the driver James Shir.  Prakash, owner of the Tata Sumo (KA 03 C 6522), does not even know the contact details and residential address of James, said the police.

The police said BIPL had not followed security guidelines for transporting cash issued by them. BIPL had employed E K Thammaiah as gunman though he had not undergone any weapons training. While the vehicle carrying cash has to be parked near the ATM kiosk where the money has to be loaded, the MUV was stopped about 400 metres from the kiosk.

The cash that was stolen belonged to Central Bank of India and SBI. BIPL has its office at Anepalya in Adugodi. BIPL junior executive Gowdilyal, his assistant Sridhar, gunman Thammaiah first went to Bank of India on Miller’s Road and collected Rs 1.4 crore that belonged to various banks. They replenished the cash at a few ATMs and reached the City Market at 2.15 pm. James parked the vehicle close to up-ramp of the flyover that leads to Mysuru Road. Gowdilyal and Sridhar took Rs 15 lakh cash and went to the CBI ATM  kiosk at GP Street which is about 400 metres away from the up-ramp.

Thammaiah told the police: “I got out of the vehicle as I wanted to urinate. I told James that I would be back soon. I came back after some time and the vehicle was not there. I searched for it on the flyover, but in vain. Then, I informed the matter to Gowdilyal.”  

The MUV could move easily on GP Street and be parked in front the ATM kiosk. But they chose to park it near up-ramp. Thammaiah went to relieve himself soon after Sridhar and Gowdilyal left, leading to a suspicion, the police said.