MUMBAI: Nilesh Dattatray Chougle (33) is a well known businessman and a chairman of a huge housing society in Pune but in Mumbai he is a habitual house breaker who has around 110 criminal cases on him.
The city crime branch on Tuesday arrested Chougle along with his two associates-Vishwas Khedekar (37) and Navnath Bhoite (29) from Pune in connection with a house breaking. In March this year some unknown persons had broke into a office at Ram Industrial estate in Wadala and had robbed six laptops at one go. The RAK Marg police had registered a theft case and the property cell was doing a parallel probe.
During months of investigations police tracked the laptop which was secured with a security software to Pune. Police tracked the person who was using the laptop and chain of questioning led to arrest of Chougle, a habitual thief from Pune said Nandkumar Gopale, senior inspector property cell.
Later police team led by inspector Laxmikant Salunke arrested two of his associates from Pune. Police said that during interrogations it was transpired that Chougle was the leader of the gang and himself has around 110 offences including, robbery, theft, house breakings and dacoities.
The modus operandi of Chougle and his associates is that in the day time they would move posing as salesman and survey the targets and conduct house breakings accordingly. Chougle who started as a small time thief in 2002 graduated to expertise in house breaking. He is so expert that he is able to break any type of lock in minutes''said assistant inspector Dilip Phoolpagare.
In a decade of house breaking, Chougle has made enough money to own a lavish two BHK house in a plush Hari Kripa housing society in Pune, he own fleet of auto rickshaw which he gives on rent. In 2008 his gang carried a major house breaking in Matunga from which he brought a flat worth Rs one crore in Lokhandwala in Andheri. Police have seized the flats after he was arrested.
*Chougle is 6.3 feet in height, dresses well and moves in air condition train from Pune to Mumbai. When he visits various courts he sees that his visit doesnot go empty hands and he carries some or the other house breakings in city.Now his mother is looking for a suitable girl to get him married. He comes in day and after stealing the booty particularly electronic goods viz laptops, computer, projectors and tv sets and goes back to Pune.