The robbers molested several other female passengers apart from gang raping a young woman during the robbery on a moving bus in Tangail as 10 more culprits, including the mastermind, have been arrested over the incident.
Director (Legal and Media Wing) of Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) Commander Khandaker Al Moin revealed the information while briefing reporters in the capital on Monday.
The arrestees are Ratan Hossain, 21, the ringleader of the gang, Mohammad Alauddin, 24, Sohagh Mondal, 20, Khandaker Hasmat Ali alias Dipu, 23, Babu Hossain alias Zulhas, 21, Mohammad Jibon, 21, Abdul Mannan, 22, Nayeem Sarkar, 19, Rasel Talukder, 32, and Aslam Talukder alias Raihan, 18. RAB members also seized 20 handsets, 14 SIM cards and several other things from their possession.
With this, all 13 culprits involved in the spine-chilling incident have been arrested. Earlier, police arrested three robbers – Raja Mia, Abdul Awal and Nurnabi -- from Tangail and Gazipur.
In the early hours of August 3, an ‘Eagle Paribahan’ bus, which was going to Narayanganj from Kushtia, came under the robber attack in Tangail.
The robbers looted cash and other valuables of passengers after holding them hostage at gunpoint and gang raped a young woman before fleeing with the booty after the three-hour horror.
A female passenger filed a case against 10-12 unknown people with Madhupur Police Station on the same day alleging that she was gang raped by the robbers on the bus.
He, however, could not give the exact number of the victims, saying they have so far come to know that 5-7 female passengers were on the bus.
The RAB officer said during conversation with Raja, Ratan proposed committing robbery on buses when Raja asked him to organise other members of the gang.
Then Ratan informed Mannan, Jibon, Dipu, Awal and Nurnabi of the plan. Later, Mannan informed Sohagh, Aslam, Rasel, Nayeem and Alauddin of the matter.
As per their plan, a group of 13 robbers, led by Ratan, took part in the robbery on the ‘Eagle Paribahan’ bus.
Around 1:00am on August 3, Ratan, Raja, Mannan and Nurnabi first got into the bus from Sirajganj Mor Road area after posing as passengers. After a while, other members boarded the vehicle.
The bus had 24 passengers. When it reached Tangail, the robbers took control of it and Ratan was driving it while others tied the passengers and looted their cash and valuables.
Ratan began committing robbery in 2018 and he landed in jail twice earlier, Moin said.
The robber gang, led by him, has committed several robberies so far.