Antilia bomb scare: NIA files charge sheet against Waze, Sharma, eight others
Mumbai, Sep 03: The National Investigation Agency on Friday filed a charge sheet against ten persons including former police officers Sachin Waze and Pradeep Sharma in the case of SUV with explosives found near industrialist Mukesh Ambani''s house and the murder of businessman Mansukh Hiran.
Besides Waze and Sharma, other accused named in the over 9,000-page charge sheet are Vinayak Shinde, Naresh Gor, Riyazuddin Kazi, Sunil Mane, Anand Jadhav, Satish Mothkuri, Manish Soni and Santosh Shelar.
Shinde had been suspended from the police force in a different case while Kazi and Mane were serving police officers when they were arrested. All the accused are now in judicial custody.
The accused have been charged under IPC sections for murder, criminal conspiracy, kidnapping and negligent conduct with respect to explosive substances'' as well as provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, Explosive Substances Act and Arms Act, the NIA said in a release.
The charge sheet cites 200 witnesses, a prosecution lawyer said.
The NIA, after it took over the case, clubbed three First Information Reports (FIRs) registered by Maharashtra Police, the release said.
The first FIR was registered at Gamdevi police station after an SUV with gelatin sticks and a threat letter was found on Carmichael Road in south Mumbai near Ambani''s multi-storey house Antilia'' in February this year.
The second FIR was registered at Vikhroli police station about alleged theft of the same SUV -- a Mahindra Scorpio -- from the possession of Thane businessman Mansukh Hiran. The third FIR was registered at Mumbra police station in Thane after Hiran''s body was found in a creek.
Evidence about involvement of the ten arrested accused in various stages of conspiracy to place the explosives-laden SUV, its (prior) theft, and subsequent murder of Mansukh Hiran came to the fore during probe, the NIA said.
The SUV was found near Antilia on February 25, 2021. Mansukh Hiran, who had claimed that the vehicle had been stolen from his possession, was found dead in a creek in Thane on March 5.
Sachin Waze, posted with the Mumbai crime branch and earlier famous as an encounter specialist'', was arrested as prime accused and later dismissed from service. Sharma, another former encounter specialist officer, had already retired from the police force.
On June 9, the special NIA court here had granted an extension of two months to the Central agency to submit its charge sheet. Another extension of thirty days was granted on August 5 after the NIA said the investigation was still underway.