Police bust a gang involved in motorcycle theft in Kathmandu ValleyAuto theft incidents are on the rise, but vehicle recovery and arrest rates are dismal, data show.
Police have arrested twelve people involved in motorcycle theft in Kathmandu Valley. The arrests were made over the period of the last three weeks.
The suspects had lifted at least thirty-four motorcycles in the past five months. Police said eleven of the stolen motorcycles were recovered.
The Metropolitan Police Circle, Kirtipur, had mobilised a team to bust the ring that had long been involved in motorcycle theft, DSP Chhedulal Kamati, chief of the police circle, said.
He identified the suspects as Ranjeet Chettri of Hetauda, Rinjen Moktan of Chandragiri, Madan Tamang of Kritipur, Bharat Thapa of Nawalparasi, Santosh Gole of Makwanpur, Bikram Bhujel of Sindhuli, Raju Poudel of Bardiya, Som Sunar and Sandeep Gurung of Chitwan, Indra Bahadur Tamang and Ganesh Lama of Kavre.
“They used to steal two-wheelers from Balaju, Soyambhu, Kritipur and other busy parts of the Valley and sell them in Chitwan and Hetauda,” said Kamati. "They had even used forged documents to sell some of the stolen motorcycles."
According to the data of the Metropolitan Traffic Police Division, the number of vehicle thefts is rising every year. The data also show that the recovery rate of stolen vehicles and the arrest rate are very low.
In the fiscal year 2016-17, the division recorded 1,030 cases of vehicle theft. Police recovered only 168 of those stolen vehicles and arrested only 15 people.
In the following fiscal year 2017-18, the number of vehicle theft cases stood at 1,385. Police recovered only 251 of those vehicles and managed to arrest only seventeen people.
Similarly, in the fiscal year 2018-19, there were 1,611 incidents of vehicle theft; 189 vehicles were recovered and 81 people were arrested.
“Most of the people who are involved in vehicle theft are longtimers. Once they are out of jail, there is a high chance of them going back to their old ways,” said Sub-Inspector, Ramesh Bajgain, chief of the Victim Support Unit of the Metropolitan Traffic Police Division.
The unit specialises in the investigation of vehicle theft.