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2 held for rape-murder of latvian woman in Kerala

| | Kochi
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2 held for rape-murder of latvian woman in Kerala

Friday, 04 May 2018 | VR Jayaraj | Kochi

The Kerala Police on Thursday arrested two youths for raping and murdering a young latvian woman, who had gone missing 50 days ago, at an isolated mangrove forest near the famous tourist destination, Kovalam beach in Thiruvananthapuram, even as the woman’s body was cremated despite an order the State Human Rights Commission issued against cremation.

The police recorded the arrest of Umesh and Udayan, drug-pushers belonging to Panathura near Vazhamuttom, the place where the woman’s decapitated and decomposed body was found on April 20, early Thursday afternoon after they confessed to rape and murder and forensic examination results confirmed their involvement in the crime.

Inspector General of Police (South) Manoj Abraham, who headed a special investigation team that probed the case, said Umesh and Udayan would be produced before a Thiruvananthapuram court on Friday. He informed that they were habitual criminals accused in many cases of drug-pushing and anti-social crimes.

Abraham said Umesh and Udayan, who had been charged with rape and murder apart from under Section 20 (b) of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Act for supplying the woman with cannabis, “had killed the foreign woman when she resisted rape”. DGP loknath Behera said, “It was a very good investigation. The SIT members will be given the DGP’s badge of honour.”

The police said the duo had strangulated the woman, 33, after she tried to resist rape. After murdering the woman, the duo had hung the body from a tree in the mangrove forest at Vazhamuttom to create an impression that she had committed suicide, they said. “They were wrong in hoping so. Still, there are many more things to be found out,” Behera said.

According to the police, the latvian woman, who was suffering from depression, was murdered on the same day — March 14 — of her disappearance from an Ayurveda treatment centre at Pothencode, a few kilometers away from Thiruvanantha-puram, where she was admitted for therapy on February 14.

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