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By Express News Service

BHOPAL: Shocking but true! An official of the state excise department has emerged as the key accused in the sensational Rs 28 lakh burglary at the house of a money lender in Seoni district of Madhya Pradesh.

“Rajesh Chaudhary, presently posted as an assistant district excise officer in Jabalpur district is among the eight accused so far arrested in the case of October 9 house-break and burglary at the house of money lender Ashok Sahu,” the Seoni district police superintendent Kumar Prateek said on Saturday.

“The remaining seven arrested men, include an ex-serviceman Amit Singh Sikarwar and an alleged journalist, who runs a local news portal in Jabalpur,” he added.

11 men are accused in the case, out of whom eight have been arrested. Six of those arrested are from Jabalpur, one from Seoni and one from Dindori district.

The assistant excise officer had used a listed criminal Dharmendra from Dindori district for executing the house break and burglary at the house of money lender Ashok Sahu in Seoni district on October 9 morning, cops said.

The three vehicles used in the crime included the personal car of the assistant excise officer. A probe has revealed that he was present at the spot throughout the entire crime, the Seoni SP said. 

“We’ve asked the Jabalpur district police to find out and share with us, information about whether the assistant excise officer, the ex-serviceman or the alleged local journalist have been involved in any crime in the past or not,” he said.

The ongoing police probe has revealed that the proceeds of the burgled property, including Rs 4.49 lakh in cash and 780 gm of gold were shared between the accused.

The gold was sold to a goldsmith-jeweler in Jabalpur, who after melting the gold paid the accused. 

Rs 27.55 lakh has been recovered from the arrested men, including Rs 7 lakh from the Jabalpur district assistant excise officer. Three MUVs and SUVs, used in the October 9 crime, including the excise department official’s vehicle, have been seized by Seoni district police.

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