A drivers’ gang behind abduction of univ student
After his father passed away four months ago, private university student Kazi Hasibur Rahman Himel, 28, started running the family business.
A criminal gang took this turn of events as an opportunity to abduct Himel and get a significant amount as ransom from his family, Rab said yesterday.
Rab rescued Himel from an area in Sunamganj's Tahirpur upazila close to Bangladesh's border with India's Meghalaya on Wednesday, nearly a month after he was abducted.
The gang, led by Himel's car driver Samidul Islam and his accomplice Abdul Malek, picked up the victim from Gazipur on December 26 and took him to a border area in Tahirpur. The abductors tortured him brutally to get Tk 2 crore ransom from his family, according to investigators.
On Wednesday, the Rab arrested five kidnappers, all professional drivers, from Tahirpur, Dhaka, and Netrokona.
The arrestees -- Abdul Malek, 35, Samidul Islam, 30, Roni Nabal, 41, Russell Mia, 34, and Billal Hossain, 24, -- were placed on seven-day remand each by a Dhaka court in a case filed by Himel's uncle Nazmul.
The previous day, the Detective Branch of police and Sunamganj police picked up five other suspects.
Briefing reporters at the Rab media centre in Dhaka's Karwan Bazar yesterday, Commander Khandaker Al Moin, director of the Rab's media wing, said Malek and Samidul were the masterminds of the kidnapping.
Samidul, who had been the driver for Himel's family for about four years, had a lot of information about the family's finances and properties.
On December 16, the gang, led by Malek and Samidul, gathered in Uttara and planned to kidnap Himel, the Rab official said.
As part of the plan, Samidul told Himel that there was a good prospect for the latter to sell batteries in Sherpur district and enticed him to go there. As Himel left Dhaka for Sherpur on December 26, Samidul informed Malek about it.
Malek and his cohorts, who were on motorbikes, intercepted Himel's car in Gazipur's Salna area. They put the victim and Samidul in rear seats of the car and took them to Mymensingh's Dhobaura, which is close to the Indian border.
After staying there for three days, all gang members except Billal went to the Tahirpur border area with Himel.
From there, Malek called Himel's mother Tahura Haque over WhatsApp and demanded a ransom of Tk 2 crore for her son's life and freedom. They sent her videos of Himel's torture.
However, the abductors later agreed to release Himel for Tk 30 lakh.
The criminals asked the victim's mother to go to Tahirpur on Tuesday with the money. In the meantime, Tahura informed law enforcers about the incident and sought help.
Rab said Malek had been behind bars for more than eight years in at least 14 cases over kidnapping, robbery, and murder. He served three years for kidnapping a professor's son in Mymensingh.
Roni also served over six years in prison in two cases, including one for robbery.