“I telephoned Scarlett at about 7 pm on February 17 and told her we were going back to England. She was very happy that we were going home.” Fiona, who is a key witness in the prosecution’s case against the two men charged with culpable homicide and rape did not make any new disclosures. But her testimony only lends weight to the suspicion that the Anjuna police had been both shoddy and perhaps deliberately remiss in its investigation into the British teen’s death.
Scarlett was found dead on Anjuna beach a few metres away from Lui’s shack where she was last seen on the intervening nights of February 17 and 18, 2008. Cross-examined by the CBI’s special prosecutor S S Rivonkar, Fiona told the court she had come to Goa with eight of her nine children and her partner, Rob Clarke.
They went off to Gokarna in early February 2008, leaving Scarlett behind in Goa with her boyfriend Julio Lobo. On February 18 Fiona was told by Julio that her daughter was found “murdered” on the beach. Fiona rushes back to Goa and then begins her persistent quest for the truth.
Three days after she is told by the Anjuna police inspector Nerlon Albuquerque that her daughter drowned, Fiona finds crucial evidence between two beach shacks. “I was surprised to see my daughter’s sandals, underwear and shorts on a pathway between Lui’s shack and Shore Bar,” she told the court.
But the police still persisted with its accidental death theory. “I believed that my daughter was murdered.” Fiona said she also approached the UK foreign office for advice and was told to go to the police. She made several representations to the higher police authorities and got herself a lawyer to persist with the case and asked for a second autopsy. It was only after she took photographs of Scarlett’s body with the bruises that she got some response from the authorities.
Fiona will be examined by defence lawyers representing Samson D’Souza and Placido Carvalho the two men who have been charged by the CBI for culpable homicide and destruction of evidence. D’Souza who was a bartender in Lui’s shack is also accused of sexual assault.
I’m driven to get justice: Mother
Two-and-half years after Scarlett Keeling’s death in Goa, Fiona MacKeown says she is still driven by her search for justice for her daughter, DHNS reports from Panaji.
One of the key prosecution witnesses in the case, Fiona says she has “mixed feelings” about her return to Goa. “I feel sad, at the same time I am driven by the need to get justice for my daughter,” she said.