Scarlett’s mother ’shocked’ as murder, rape charges droppedOctober 22nd, 2009 - 8:54 pm ICT by IANS
Panaji, Oct 22 (IANS) Fiona Mackeown, the mother of Scarlett Keeling has expressed “shock and dismay” over the dropping of murder and rape charges from the chargesheet filed by the Central Bureau of Investigations (CBI) in her daughter’s murder case, a lawyer said.
Speaking to reporters Thursday evening, the counsel of Fiona Mackeown, Vikram Varma said that the dropping of charges was a shocker especially considering the fact that forensic evidence had confirmed rape and murder.
“Despite the forensic doctors’ team confirming rape and homicide, the supplementary chargesheet filed by the CBI has not only diluted the charges to culpable homicide but also ruled out rape to the shock of my client,” Varma said.
On Wednesday, the CBI’s additional chargesheet made no mention of murder and rape charges against the two main accused Samson D’Souza and Placido Carvalho.
Pointing out to other areas of significance missed by the CBI, Varma said that officials of the top investigating agency in the country made no reference to officials who had tried to sabotage the investigations into the murder of the 15-year-old British teenager by fudging documents.
“To my mind, those few officers who attempted to pass off the homicide as an accident, not only brought down the credibility of our criminal justice system but also brought down our national image,” Varma said.
Scarlett’s mother Fiona Mackeown’s campaign for justice began with her accusation that the Goa Police had sabotaged the investigation by watering down a homicide to a suicide. Her campaign had resulted in the suspension of a police officer and a forensic doctor.
The case was then handed over to the CBI for investigation, which after a 16-month probe filed the chargesheet with the Goa Children’s Court Wednesday.
Samson and Placido have been charged by the CBI under sections 304 (ii), 328, 354, 201, 109 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and section 8 (i) (ii) of the Goa Children’s Act.
The fresh charges slapped against them include sections which deal with administering drugs with the intention of causing hurt and use of criminal force with an intention of outraging modesty. Scarlett’s body was found on the Anjuna beach in North Goa in February last year. The brutal murder exposed the seedy underbelly of tourism in the coastal belt of Goa.
Tags: accusation, british teenager, cbi, criminal justice system, culpable homicide, dismay, fiona, forensic evidence, goa police, indian penal code, investigating agency, murder case, murder rape, national image, placido, rape charges, scarlett, shocker, souza, vikram