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Punjab Police busts gang of snatchers; five held

The Punjab Police Tuesday claimed to have busted a gang allegedly involved in over 60 cases of snatching and theft in Punjab and Himachal Pradesh, and arrested five of its members here.

The gang was active in Patiala, Khanna, Fatehgarh Sahib, Mohali and Ropar areas in Punjab and Bilaspur in Himachal Pradesh, police said.

Five members of the gang -- all under 25 years of age -- have been arrested and they hail from Patiala and were active in these areas for the last three years, they said.

Police have recovered more than 50 mobiles and six motorcycles from them.

Baseball bats, with which the gang members allegedly used to hit victims, have also been recovered. The accused persons had also attempted ATM robberies, which are still being probed, police said.

They were wanted by the police of the areas in Punjab and Himachal Pradesh.

Those arrested are Gurpreet, Aniket, Jagpreet, Amandeep and Mangal Das, police said.

Gurpreet and Aniket have several case of snatching, attempt to murder and murder registered against them in Patiala district, they said.

Residents of Phase 1 and 2 of Patiala City, they belong to the families of the daily wagers.

Their modus operandi was to leave home on the pretext of going on religious trips on motorcycles.

"They used to leave their mobile phones at home and after committing a string of crimes, they used to get back to their routine lives," Senior Superintendent of Police, Rupnagar, Swapan Sharma said.

They used to target victims late at night when the route to escape would be clear of traffic, he told reporters here.