KUANTAN: Four security company staff who stole RM600,000 from their cash-in-transit van thought they had executed the perfect crime.
To outsmart the authorities, they had hidden the money in a hotel room in Raub and planned to return later to split the loot.
However, little did they know that police had monitored their movements via closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras at various locations in Raub, which led to their arrest on Nov 15.
The drama unfolded about noon on Nov 14 when the security guards, aged between 29 and 59, collected cash from a financial institution in Raub before putting them into 10 security bags which were later neatly sealed.
At about 7.30pm, they were instructed to send the daily collection amounting to RM2.8 million in four canvas bags to their headquarters in Kota Damansara, Selangor, at about 11pm before returning to Raub the same day.
However, when the auditor at the headquarters did an inspection, he realised one of the bags containing RM600,000 was missing and immediately alerted the police.
Pahang police chief Datuk Abd Jalil Hassan said a team from the state police commercial crime investigation department and Raub police headquarters were deployed to track down the suspects and scrutinise CCTV footage at several locations in Raub.
He said police picked up the four suspects at their respective homes on Sunday afternoon before one of them led police to the hotel in Raub, where RM599,300 in cash was kept in two backpacks in a cupboard.
“Investigations revealed the suspect had paid RM700 to book the room for seven days and told the hotel management not to clean up the room.
“We believe the suspects were planning to return and take the cash on a later date... maybe they assumed the hotel was the safest place to keep the cash.
“Initial checks revealed one of the security staff had torn the security bag containing RM600,000 during their journey from Raub to Kota Damansara, before filling the cash into his backpack,” he added.
Jalil said all four suspects were previously doing odd jobs before joining the security company about three months ago, and investigations revealed two of them were the masterminds behind the theft.
He added that the four suspects also did not comply with the standard operating procedures (SOPs) when transporting the cash as they had stopped the van twice — at a petrol station and to collect cash from another security branch in Bentong.
“The suspects have been remanded at the district police station until Nov 22, and they are being investigated under Section 408 of the Penal Code for criminal breach of trust,” he said.
Jalil advised security firms to beef up security while transporting cash as it could help curb criminal activity.
“Vehicles used to transport cash have to be equipped with CCTV cameras and Global Positioning System (GPS) tracker so that the company will know if they stop at any location.
“The canvas and security bags should be secured with zipper pulls and not only cable ties,” he said at the presentation of certificates of appreciation to eight policemen who were involved in solving the case.