Latvian tourist murder case: Court sentences convicts to life imprisonment till death

Screengrab: Mathrubhumi News

Thiruvananthapuram: The First Class Additional District Sessions Court in Thiruvananthapuram sentenced the two convicts, in the rape and murder of a Latvian woman in Kovalam, to life imprisonment till death. The sessions court judge K Sanilkumar also awarded a fine of Rs 1,65,000 on each of the convicts.

The court witnessed dramatic incidents prior to the sentencing on Tuesday morning. The accused shouted they are innocent and demanded a lie detector test. They also alleged that they have seen a yoga instructor, who is a polyglot, escape from the crime scene and urged the court to investigate. They also requested a detailed scientific examination of hair collected from the dead body. However, the court declared the verdict after hearing the pleas of the convicts.

The convicts created a ruckus in the court even after the punishment was announced. The accused were found guilty based on circumstantial and scientific evidence.

The highly decomposed and headless body of the woman was recovered from a mangrove forest at nearby Thiruvallam on April 21, 2018, and Umesh and Udayan were arrested on May 3, 2018.

The two men were charged under IPC Sections 302 (murder), 376 (rape), and 20(b) of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act.

Police had said that the woman was raped and murdered by the two accused, who are drug peddlers, on March 14, the day she went missing.

The accused lured her to the spot saying it was a scenic and beautiful place, made her consume ganja, and then sexually assaulted and strangled her to death, they said.

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