The Detective Branch of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police on Saturday said that about 300 mobile phones are snatched on an average daily as about 100 muggers roam about the streets in Dhaka and adjacent areas.
Nearly one and a half dozen places in the capital and nearby areas have been identified as vulnerable spots for cell phones and other valuable items’ snatching, said Harun-or-Rashid, chief of Detective Branch of the DMP.
The police came up with the findings after arresting 16 people involved in cell phone snatching incidents in busy streets in the capital.
The arrestees are Md Mizan, Amirul Islam Babu, Sharif Hossain, Sohel Babu, Ridoy, Raj, Suman, Ridoy, Moniruzzaman, Nazmul, Monir, Imran, Faruk, Ashraful Islam Sajib, Arif and Hasan.
There are several Mohajan (ring leaders) who control the snatching groups and business, Harun said, adding that of the arrestees, three are ring leaders.
The police officer said that the arrestees told the DB that about 100 people roamed the city streets daily and the gang leaders set a target for each of them to snatch at least three mobile phones a day.
‘The police estimate that on average 300 mobile phones are being snatched in city daily,’ said Harun.
The cheaper phones are being sold directly on local black markets while the expensive ones are dismantled and sold in parts. In some cases, the gang leaders change the International Mobile Equipment Identity numbers of the phones and sell them.
The DB official requested the city dwellers to file general diaries after such mugging incidents so that law enforcers can at least find out the hotspots. A case was filed with the Uttarkhan police station over the arrests.