Passenger who killed Careem captain nabbed

Investigators say captain was murdered during ride; car not recovered yet

Arsalan Altaf February 24, 2018
An employee shows the logo of ride-hailing company Careem on his mobile in his office in the West Bank city of Ramallah July 17, 2017. PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: Islamabad Police on Saturday arrested a young man who allegedly killed a Careem captain and snatched his car near G-13 on Thursday. Investigators said Attaullah, 25, tried to snatch car at gunpoint but opened fire when Junaid Mustafa, the 26-year-old victim, tried to resist.

Briefing the media on the case on Saturday afternoon, police said Atta was the one who booked the cab near Shaheen Chemist in F-11 Markaz at around 2:35 am on Thursday and told the captain to go to G-13.

“When they reached a service road in G-13, Atta told Junaid to get off. The suspect tried to force the captain out of his vehicle but the captain resisted upon which the suspect opened fire and killed him on the spot,” said SP-Investigation Sheikh Zubair Ahmad.

A security guard who had heard the gunshots informed the police who when reached the site found Mustafa lying in a pool of blood in the middle of the road.

He received three bullets to his chest and left arm. The guard told them that a car had sped away after the shooting.

Careem captain shot dead, car stolen in Islamabad

The victim was identified through his identity card and the family was traced down in Rawalpindi who told the police that he drove his car with online ride-hailing service Careem.

Though the company has maintained that there was no passenger with Junaid at the time, the police have insisted that the robbery and murder took place during the ride.

“Yes, he was killed during the ride. The same passenger who booked the cab killed him,” a police officer said, adding the WagonR car was then taken to Charsadda in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The officer also claimed that the ride continued even after the robbery-murder.

Police said the suspect was tracked down through the mobile number he used to book the ride. He was reportedly arrested from Tarnol near Islamabad, where he lived along with his parents and siblings.

Police say the suspect delivered the car somewhere in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and returned to his home in Tarnol. The car has not been recovered yet.

When police arrested him, another stolen Honda Civic car was recovered from him. Police found out that he had snatched this car too at gun point in Sector F-10/4 in wee hours of February 12.

“He would snatch cars in the capital, take them to K-P where he would sell them on. He worked alone,” the SP said. “During interrogation when we asked him what would he have done if the car owner in the February 12 case had also resisted, he said he would have killed him too,” an investigator told The Express Tribune.

However, as soon as the police produced the suspect before the TV cameras, the suspect took off his mask with his hand-cuffed hands and caused a commotion. He screamed that he was innocent and police had picked up all his family members.

Policemen had to pick him up and take out of the room. Officers said they were pretty sure it was him who had killed the driver. They said the victim in the February 12 case had also correctly identified him.

Careem also released a statement on Saturday saying they were working closely with the police on the case. “We have shared important data and insights, which will have led to major developments in the investigation process and will help in bringing culprits to justice.

We will continue our follow up and use all legal resources to ensure that the case comes to its logical conclusion,” the statement said. It said the company was in touch with victim family and would be taking steps to protect its captains and customers from crime