Police yesterday claimed to have arrested nine inter-district motorbike thieves and recovered 20 stolen motorbikes conducting drives in different districts for the last two days.
Law enforcers said the gang stole nearly 1,000 motorbikes across the country and later traded them in different areas.
The arrestees are Md Mehedi Hasan (19), Md Mahmudul Hasan (24), Md Shakhawat Hossain alias Rubel (25), Shahadat Hossain Sajjad (27), Md Reaz (32), Md Anwarul Islam Ripon (38), Md Obaidul Kader (42) and Milton Sarkar alias Milton Kumar Shaha alias Sohel (44).
Among them, Milton, Rafiq, and Reaz are the kingpins of the motorbike stealing gang, said police.
CMP Additional Deputy Commissioner (South) Palash Kanti Nath told The Daily Star, "Arrested Rafiq and Milton met in jail and later organised the syndicate to steal motorbikes. Under the syndicate, over 15 members used to steal bikes."
"During interrogation, the duo admitted that they have stolen around 1,000 motorbikes from different areas in the country over the last seven years," said the ADC.
Assistant Commissioner (Kotwali zone) Nobel Chakma said, "A team of Kotwali police first arrested Mehedi and Milton on March 25 night with an unregistered motorcycle without a number plate from Kadamtali area of the port city."
"Based on Milton's information, police recovered one motorbike from Sitakunda Sadar upazila, seven from Boro Darogar Hat of Sitakunda, two from Feni and one from Ramgar area," told the AC.
During the drives, police also arrested Anwar, Obaidul, Mahmudul, and Rubel in this connection, said the official.
"After modifying the motorbikes, they used to sell those in exchange for Tk 15,000 to Tk 30,000 based on the bike's condition. The stolen motorcycles used to run in remote areas of Khagrachhari, Sitakunda, Feni, and other parts where traffic police are not available," said Sub-inspector Mominul Hasan of Kotwali police station.
OC Nezam Uddin of Kotwali Police Station said Milton is accused in four cases, Ripon in three and Sajjad in four cases. Police were trying to arrest the other accused, he said.