Police custody of Italian marines extended

Police custody of Italian marines extended

The police custody of Italian marines accused of firing at an Indian fishing boat and killing two fishermen has been extended by a week by Karunagappally first class judicial magistrate court at Kollam district in Kerala on Thursday.

The court acceded to the request of prosecution to extend the custody for further investigation. The prosecution also informed the court that extending custody was necessary for carrying out search to recover weapons allegedly used by the accused to fire at fishermen. However, the court also allowed the request of the accused that the search of the ship to recover weapons should be carried out only in the presence of Italian officials. The prosecution also did not object to the demand.

The accused Latorre Massimiliano and Salvatore Girone had been sent to police custody for three days by the court earlier.

Meanwhile, Kerala High Court on Thursday sent notices to Union and Kerala governments in a petition filed by Italian Consulate that the FIR filed by Kerala police against the accused Italian marines be quashed. The Italian authorities argued that the firing occurred in international waters and Kerala Police has no authority to charge case against the marines. The court later granted time till next week to Union and state governments to file counter affidavits in the case.

In another development, sisters of Ajesh Pinki , one of the two fishermen killed by the marines, moved the High Court seeking Rs 2 crore compensation. Dora, wife of Valentine alias Jelestine, another fisherman killed, had already filed a petition in the High Court seeking Rs 1 crore compensation.