Saturday, Nov 22, 2014

‘Custodial death’ victim’s father moves HC, seeks CBI investigation

Express News Service | Mumbai | Posted: June 10, 2014 4:10 am

The father of Agnelo alias Richie Valdaris, who died in Wadala Railway Police’s custody, and three others including a minor who allegedly faced physical and sexual abuse in the police lock-up in April, Monday moved the Bombay High Court seeking action against police officers who allegedly brutalised the youngsters.

The petition filed jointly by Leonard Valdaris, an employee of the Mumbai Port Trust, and the three boys who were picked up by the police with Richie, has sought the prosecution of the officers and urged the High Court to transfer the probe to the CBI.

The Child Welfare Committee (CWC) that recorded the statement of the the minor last week directed the registration of FIR under sections of the Protection of Children from sexual offences Act (POCSOA) against police officers allegedly involved in sexually assaulting a minor in their custody.

According to the statement given by the minor, on the intervening night of April 15 and 16, they were allegedly picked up by the police for stealing a gold chain and ring.

The teenager also said that they were being threatened to commit to perform demeaning sexual acts, which they did out of fear. He said that one of them was stripped and made to run outside the lock-up.

Along with an independent probe, the petitioners have also urged the court to grant them suitable compensation. The court will hear the petition on Tuesday.

The Wadala Railway police had claimed that Richie was killed after being run over by a train while attempting to flee from custody.
While a CID inquiry has been intiated to probe Richie’s death, the police have not undertaken any probe into the allegations of sexual assault of the three others including the minor.

mumbai.newsline@expressindia.com

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