Kerala HC seeks standing report on proof tampering case in opposition to minister AntonyRaju

The Kerala excessive courtroom on Friday admitted a petition that spotlighted the lengthy delay in a trial in opposition to state transport minister Antony Raju in a 2005 case during which Raju is accused of tampering with proof in a 1990 drug haul case.

A single choose bench of justice Ziyhad Rehman additionally sought a report from the chief judicial Justice of the Peace’s (CJM) courtroom in Thiruvananthapuram district’s Nedumangadu on the standing of the trial together with causes for the delay. The excessive courtroom will take up the petition, which seeks a excessive court-monitored trial, once more after two weeks, justice Rehman mentioned, rejecting the federal government pleader’s competition that the petitioner, George Vattakulam approached the courtroom with some vested pursuits.

But the bench underlined that the petition contained info and the three-decade delay was one such truth, a degree that the pleader sought to counter saying there have been many such circumstances pending in varied courts.

The case in opposition to the minister dates to the Nineteen Nineties, lengthy earlier than Antony Raju made a profession swap from regulation to politics. In 1990, Raju was a junior lawyer, and one in every of a number of legal professionals employed to signify an Australian citizen Andrew Salvatore Cervelli who was arrested on prices of smuggling 61.5gram cannabis to India by concealing it in his innerwear.

The district courtroom sentenced the Australian nationwide to 10 years in jail in 1992. But the excessive courtroom acquitted him in 1993 after Cervelli’s authorized workforce demonstrated that the innerwear produced by the prosecution was too small for his or her shopper.

But the case took a dramatic flip in 1996 when Cervelli was arrested in reference to a homicide case in Australia and advised Australian businesses how his household bribed a courtroom clerk and others in India to tamper with proof and wriggle out of a drug case. The data was handed on to the Central Bureau of Investigation and the case was re-opened on the occasion of the excessive courtroom in 2002. But the police probe didn’t transfer ahead until 2005 when TP Senkumar took over because the IG southern vary in 2005.


The courtroom clerk allegedly admitted to the police that he gave the innerwear to the Australian nationwide’s authorized workforce in August 1990, who returned it to him 4 months later. It is throughout this era that the interior put on is alleged to have been reduce and re-stitched. According to the prosecution, the probe workforce recognized Antony Raju because the junior lawyer who allegedly tampered with the proof. Raju was then a junior lawyer practising within the district courtroom and taking his preliminary steps in politics, as a youth chief of the Kerala Congress.

A forensic examination of the interior put on additionally confirmed the tampering and a case was registered in opposition to Raju and the courtroom clerk. But the case dragged on attributable to many causes together with a number of appeals in larger courts. In 2013, a cost sheet was filed in opposition to Antony Raju and the courtroom clerk. Court information present the case was deferred 22 occasions and later shifted to a different courtroom in Nedumangad in the identical district.

The minister refused to touch upon the brand new growth. “Whatever I want to say I said it before. The case is sub judice,” he mentioned within the state capital. In the previous, Raju has mentioned that he had no position within the delay within the trial and that his lawyer represented him each time the case got here up in courtroom.

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