Serial killer escapes with cellmate from Kerala prison

A serial killer facing the death sentence escaped from the Poojappura Central Prison in Thiruvananthapuram on Monday along with another convict, who was also his cellmate.

Jayanandan—often dubbed “Ripper” Jayanandan for the methods he used to kill—and Prakash, who was incarcerated after being convicted in vehicle theft cases, fled the prison during the early hours of Monday. Authorities at the prison have launched a manhunt for the two convicts.

Officials at the prison said the duo strung bamboo sticks together with clothes of other prisoners and mounted the sticks to scale the prison wall. The prison authorities came to know of the incident after the bamboo sticks were spotted in the area that houses the prison hospital.  The wardens who inspected the cells soon found that the prisoners had fled after breaking their cell’s lock.

 Jayanandan had been booked in five murder cases, including that of Baby, a housewife in Puthenvelikkara, in October 2006. He was sentenced to death over the killing.

Jayanandan, who hails from Mala in Thrissur district, has repeatedly hit headlines in the state over the past decade for the manner in which he killed people who came in the way of his thefts.

His murders, which include two double-murders, also caught the public eye due to the nature of their execution: He often used iron rods and crowbars to bludgeon victims to death.

Jayanandan in 2010 escaped from the Kannur Central Prison, only to be nabbed later in Ooty. He had also tried to escape from the Viyyoor Prison.

Prakash, from Oachira in Kollam, was serving a three-year term in the prison. Apart from the murder of Baby, Jayanandan has been convicted for seven other murders, including that of Panjikkaran Jose in Mala in 2003; Nabeeza and her daughter-in-law Fauziya, also in Mala, in 2004; Kalappurakkal Sahadevan and his wife Nirmala in October 2004; and Subhashakan, a guard at the Kerala State Beverages Corporation in Paravoor, in August 2005.

All the murders involved theft of gold, money and other valuables.

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