Suresh Suvarna
Suresh Suvarna

Mumbai: The Mumbai Crime Branch on Monday arrested a 28-year-old cousin of gangster Prasad Pujari for allegedly sending money to Pujari's associate. Suresh Kumar Suvarna was arrested from his native place in Kuthiya in Udupi district of Karnataka.

According the Crime Branch, the investigation in an extortion case of Pujari revealed that Suvarna had transferred money to one of Pujari’s associate who was arrested in the case.

A developer from Vikhroli area was threatened for extortion by Pujari for some time, Pujari was calling him over Whatsapp and BOTIM, an internet-based video call app, seeking Rs10 lakh extortion.

On December 19, a firing incident took place on Shiv Sena party worker Chandrashekhar Jadhav in Tagor Nagar of Vikhroli by Pujari's henchmen. As many as eight people have been arrested in the case so far.

According to a Crime Branch officer, "Pujari allegedly told him that, 'main sabse ek karod rupiya leta hun, par tu mere area ka hai, tu mujhe 10 lakh dena, malum hai na maine Vikhroli main ek chocolate diya hai' (I take Rs1 crore from others, you are from my area, I will take Rs10 lakh from you. You must be knowing I had sent a chocolate (pointing towards firing incident)."

However, the builder stopped taking his calls after which he sent his aide, Sunil Angane, to the developer's officer. The builder then approached the Anti-Extortion Cell (AEC), which registered an offence and arrested Angne.

On February 15, stringent  Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) was invoked in the case.

"During the investigation, we came to know that Rs25,000 was transferred to the accused account from a Karnataka for the job. We sent a team and took Suvarna into custody," said Satish Tawre senior inspector of the Crime Branch unit 7.

Suvarna was produced in the MCOCA court on Monday. He was sent to police custody till March 11.

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