Bulgarians held for stealing money from Pokhara ATMs

POKHARA: Two Bulgarian men were arrested after they were found out to be involved in stealing money from ATMs in the tourist city of Pokhara in western Nepal.

The suspects have been identified as Ivanov Morphin Hatov and Lusianov Ramon Bibhov. Both of them had arrived in Nepal on December 19.

Police swung into action after the Nabil Bank tipped them off about a foreigner indulged in suspicious activities at its ATM in Lakeside of Pokhara. The private bank had gone through CCTV footage after receiving complaints from customers that they lost money from their accounts without withdrawing a penny.

A team of security personnel kept an eye on 45-year-old Ivanov Morphin who was first seen entering an ATM at Gaurighat wearing a blue cap yesterday morning. The Nepal Police sleuths followed him when he entered several other ATM booths in Lakeside.

They finally raided an apartment at Gaurighat where the scooter-borne Bulgarian man ended up entering after his trick business, some shopping and breakfast outside.

Police found Ivanov's accomplice, another Bulgarian man, in the apartment. They seized several paraphernalia and tools that were apparently used for their con business.

The seized items include hot gum glue, 14 data screening devices, eight ATM cards, three Namsate SIM cards, a surveillance camera, three laptops, two card readers, seven flash drives, a screwdriver and Rs 300,000 in cash.

CCTV footage had shown another foreigner stealing money from an ATM booth in Kathmandu last week. But it is yet to be ascertained whether it was one of the duo arrested in Pokhara.