The Superintendent of Police (SP) of The Nilgiris, Murali Rambha told reporters that investigation by seven special teams formed to crack the case has revealed that in all 11 persons were involved in the crime.
The four arrested persons have been identified as Santhosh Sami (39), Deepu (32), Satheesan (42) and Udhayakumar (47) of Thrissur District in Kerala. They were booked under sections 396 (dacoity with murder), 324 (voluntarily causing hurt using dangerous weapons or by means), 342 (punishment for wrongful confinement) and 449 (house-trespass in order to commit offence) of the Indian Penal Code.
Addressing reporters, the SP said the gang committed the dacoity based on Jayalalithaa’s former driver Kanagaraj’s strong belief that there was a heavy stock of cash and valuables in the Kodanad Estate bungalow. But the gang that broke open three rooms including that of the former CM Jayalalithaa and AIADMK general secretary VK Sasikala could only manage to get five watches and a crystal showpiece.
The SP said that after committing the crime the gang that came in three four-wheelers fled in different directions. While Kanagaraj and Sayan fled to Coimbatore, six others escaped in two other four-wheelers while the rest escaped in buses. “The police checked one of the vehicles at Gudalur, but no prima facie suspicion was found at that time,” the SP said and added that their personal details were collected and they were allowed to leave.
“During the course of investigation four of them were arrested. Special teams are on the lookout for the others,” Murali Rambha said. The SP said that the stolen crystal showpiece has been recovered. Further he quoted the arrested persons as saying that they abandoned the five watches in a river in Kerala. Stating that motive of the crime was to loot property, he added that they are continuing investigations in other possible aspects.