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Man arrested in connection with two Richmond robberies

By Richmond Sentinel

Published 4:20 PDT, Thu July 23, 2020

Richmond RCMP have arrested a man in connection to two robberies earlier this month.

The first incident took place just before midnight on July 6 at a business in the 6000 block of Blundell Road. A woman was discovered lying on the ground. She told officers that she had been robbed. 

The victim alleged that during the course of the robbery, a male suspect tasered her multiple times. She also believed a female suspect was involved. During the robbery, the victim sustained significant injuries requiring hospitalization.

The Lower Mainland Integrated Police Dog Services immediately searched for the suspect, but he had already fled the area.

Less than an hour later, police received reports of a second robbery in a residential parkade in the 7700 block of Firbridge Way. In this incident, the victim alleged she was pepper sprayed by a male who forcibly took her purse.

The second victim said she believed two suspects were involved, a male and a female. While struggling with the male, a blue BMW pulled up and a female got out, allegedly grabbed the victim and pulled off her sweater. The victim managed to escape and run off, at which point the two suspects departed in the vehicle. The victim sustained minor injuries.

The suspect was quickly identified, and officers from the property crime unit ultimately located and arrested Karim Vellani, on July 17. He has been charged with a number of offences in both Richmond and Surrey. Vellani, who is known to police, was remanded.

“These were brazen attacks that neither victim could foresee. Both of them were simply doing things they had done countless times before and never expected they would be violently accosted,” said Inspector Michael Cohee, officer-in-charge of investigative support services. “I know if this was my mother I would want her to be able to walk freely in her neighbourhood without fear. The public in Richmond deserve to feel safe and our officers have worked diligently to identify and secure criminal charges against the suspect.”

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