A police team first arrested the leader of the gang, Ramlal Soren from Arjari village under Bishnugarh police station, Hazaribagh SP Akhilesh Kumar Jha said.
Soren’s arrest led the police to apprehend his three accomplices — Neelkanth Turi, Manoj Kumar Mahato of Bokaro district and Zubair Hussain, who was a resident of Nawada village under Bishnugarh police station.
Jha told a press conference that the gang members, posing as Maoist ultras, had unleashed a reign of terror in Bishnugarh and Bagodar belt by extorting money from contractors of construction companies, engaged in the construction of road between Tati Jharia and Badodar on NH-100.
The arrested men have kidnapped an employee a construction company from Bishnugarh on March 23 and demanded Rs 40 lakh as ransom for his safe release, Jha said.
Though the construction company did not inform the police, the force came to know about it from its sources and begun investigation, he said.
The employee, however, lodged an FIR soon after he was released on payment of Rs 4 lakh and on the basis of the FIR, the police arrested the four early today.
Police recovered Rs 50,000, part of the Rs 4 lakh ransom paid, one mobile phone and a motorcycle without registration number used in the crime from Soren, Jha said.
In another raid conducted at Ichak last night, Jha said one Umesh Kumar, who was allegedly involved in the illegal transaction of explosives, was arrested.
On the basis of information given by him, police raided the house of one Vikash Kumar Mehta and seized 50 gelatine sticks and other explosive materials. Mehta, however, managed to escape.