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Kerala cyanide killings: Five more cases filed against Jolly Joseph, others

After taking the prime accused in the Kerala cyanide killings Jolly Joseph and two others for collecting evidence to various places, including Ponnamattom House, where three of the six deaths occurred, police on Friday registered five more cases against the accused.

A police officer, who is part of the investigation team, said five cases were registered in two police stations– one in Thamaraserry and four in Kodencherry– based on the confessions of the accused. The evidence collection trip that began on Friday morning ended late in the evening covering six key spots. Like Thursday, when they appeared before the court, people jeered at them everywhere.

The officer said except the death of one-year-old child Alphine, daughter of Sily and Shaju, Jolly confessed to her role in all the crimes. She reportedly told investigators that her second husband knew about the plot to kill his wife Sily. She also said she never fed Alphine and she had no idea about her sudden death. After Jolly’s statements there is speculation that her second husband Shaju Scaria will be arrested and made an accused in the case.

In her confession, Jolly reportedly said the first killing of Annamma Thomas, her mother-in-law, was executed after giving her pesticide-laced food. And in all other cases, expect the death of Alphine, she said cyanide was used. She also told officials that M M Mathew, the second accused in the case, allegedly supplied potassium cyanide in two small bottles and she used one and destroyed the other. Officials said they did not get any clinching evidence to corroborate cyanide use as of now.

State Director General of Police Loknath Behra will visit Kozhikode on Saturday to review the progress of the case. He has called a meeting of all officers who are part of the investigation. On Friday he had expanded the special investigation team by including more officers. “The probe is going well and our main task is to collect enough scientific evidences to nail the accused,” he said.

Though six alleged cyanide killings took place, earlier the SIT had filed only a single FIR against Jolly and two of her accomplices in the death of her first husband Roy Thomas. The autopsy reports of Roy who died in 2011confirmed traces of potassium cyanide in undigested food. Jolly is believed to have opposed the post-mortem then and later concealed the report. She also forced others to believe that it was a mere suicide. Last Friday, the police had exhumed six remains of bodies and arrested the three a day after. Now with the filing of five more FIRs, police said more arrests would be done in the coming days.

First Published:
Oct 11, 2019 22:25 IST

Source: HindustanTimes