SUV case: NIA detains 'mystery woman' seen with accused Vaze
Mumbai, April 2, 2021
After a hunt of nearly 10 days, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) finally caught and detained a 'mystery woman' seen (in CCTV footage) behind accused police official Sachin Vaze in the SUV and Thane businessman's death case.
Late on Thursday, the NIA accosted her at the Mumbai Airport and detained her. Later a team searched her home in suburbs in the western Thane district, and was questioning her.
As per preliminary information, the woman was allegedly engaged in converting black money into white using a currency note counting machine, one of which was found in one of the two Mercedes Benz cars used by arrested-suspended Assistant Police Inspector (API) Vaze which were seized by the NIA last month.
The "mystery woman" angle had emerged in the case from March 25 when CCTV grabs of a five-star hotel showed her closely trailing Vaze out of the hotel, where he had stayed for at least five days in mid-February, baffling the NIA sleuths.
The developments came close on the heels of a raid by the NIA on a posh restaurant in Girgaum on Thursday morning as part of the probe into the two cases.
The NIA has reportedly found some incriminating documents pertaining to more than half a dozen mobile SIM cards used by Vaze.
The central probe agency is investigating two connected matters -- the SUV Scorpio which was found abandoned with 20 gelatin sticks and a threat note near Antilia, the home of industrialist Mukesh Ambani on February 25, followed by the death of its owner, Thane businessman Mansukh Hiren whose body was found in the Thane Creek wetlands on March 5.
In the probe, the NIA has seized seven high-end cars -- a Scorpio, an Innova, two Mercedes Benz, a LandCruiser Prado, a Mitsubishi Outlander and a Volvo -- and is now on the trail of another car in which Vaze and some co-accused, have been caught on CCTV footage while travelling to an undisclosed location.