They sold the stolen phones after changing the IMEI number of the devices
The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and Detective Branch (DB) of police have arrested a total of 20 people in separate incidents for allegedly selling stolen mobile phones at comparatively lower prices by changing the IMEI number of the phones.
They were arrested from various places inside Dhaka in different raids from Tuesday night till Wednesday.
According to the police, there are two reasons behind the trading of stolen phones. Some people buy the stolen phones for its lower prices and another reason is that terrorists or criminals use it for subversive activities.
As it is difficult to trace phones when their International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) number is changed, so if the groups were not stopped, it could become very challenging for the law enforcers to stop them in future, police said.
CID arrested 12
Sheikh Md Rezaul Haider, the additional deputy inspector general of CID, told reporters at a press briefing: “Acting on a tip-off, a team of CID arrested 12 members of a gang from different areas of Dhaka on Wednesday.”
The arrestees are Murad Khan, 23, Lablu Hasan, 20, Al Amin alias Anik, 20, Bashir Alam Shuvo, 30, Abdul Malek, 32, owner of Mim Telecom, Tamim, 20, Shah Alam, 36, Swapan, 34, Jahangir Alam, 26, Imam Hasan, 22, Arif, 34, and Al Amin, 20.
CID also seized from their possession 265 stolen phones and nine devices they used to change the IMEI of mobile phones, he said.
According to the arrestees, Murad and Lablu used to purchase or collect stolen mobile phones at a low price from different areas. Then they would give it to Anik, Bashir and Malek to change the IMEI of the phones, so that police could not trace who sold the phones to the public, he added.
During primary interrogation, the arrestees told CID that they bought the IMEI changing devices from two mobile shops – Masud Telecom and Kabir Telecom – at the underground mobile market in Gulistan, said Rezaul.
CID also learned about some other people involved in this connection from the arrestees and trying to arrest them as well, the CID official said.
DB arrested 8
Meanwhile, AKM Hafiz Akhter, additional commissioner at DB of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) told reporters in a press brief that a team of cyber and special crime unit conducted a raid in Dhaka’s Lalbagh area on Tuesday night and arrested eight people.
The arrestees are Juel, 32, Masud, 25, Dulal, 45, Jijal Mollah alias Biplob Hossain, 38, Hasan, 38, Salim, 30, Shahjahan Miah, 35, and Khokon, 40.
During the raid, DB also recovered 55 stolen mobile phones from their possession, the additional commissioner added.
The DB official said criminals use these phones to carry out various illegal activities. Innocent people who buy the stolen phones are also committing a crime.
Both officials urged people not to buy stolen phones with changed IMEI. If people purchase the phones then they could also face legal action, the law enforcers said.