Kollam: Seven accused in the murder of Renjith Johnson here in August last year were awarded life term by the Kollam additional district court on Tuesday. The court also imposed a penalty of Rs 2 lakh each on them and ordered not to grant parole to the convicts for the first 25 years of their term in prison.
The convicted are Manoj (48) alias Pambu Manoj of Eravipuram, Renjith (32) alias Kattunni of Nedungolam, Baiju (45) alias Kaithapuzha Unni of Panattuchira, Poothakulam, Pranav (26) alias Kukku of Konathukavu, Decent Junction, Vishnu (21) of Decent Junction, Vinesh (44) of Pavithra Nagar, Kilikoloor, and Riyas (34) of Vadakkevila. They were sentenced under IPC sections 120B, 341, 364, 201, 302 and 34.
The court acquitted Ajimsha (37) of Kilikolloor, the eighth accused.
Renjith Johnson, 40, of Promise Land at Peroor was murdered on August 15, 2018 at Polachira, Chathannoor, and the body was buried at a quarry waste dumping site at Tirunelveli in Tamil Nadu. The murder was planned by the gang after Renjith started living with Manoj's wife nine years back. Renjith was running a pet shop in his house at Peroor.
Renjith Johnson was taken out by the convicts Renjith, Baiju, and Vishnu in a rented car from his pet shop at Peroor on the fateful day on the pretext of having a booze party.
He was taken to a deserted place near Polachira Ela at Chathannoor where other convicts, including Manoj, joined the gang and murdered Renjith.
The body was shifted to the trunk of another car near Nedungolam around 10.30 p.m. . The team also purchased shovels from Parippally to bury the body. The body was taken to a quarry waste dumping site near Nangalloor in Tirunelveli.
The T-shirt used by Renjith Johnson was abandoned along the wayside by the convicts which was later recovered by the police. This turned out to be an important evidence in the case. Baiju alias Kaithapuzha Unni was taken into custody on September 7, which was a turning point in the investigation and the body was exhumed the next day.
The court commented the efforts taken by investigative officer Kilikolloor SI V. Anilkumar who submitted the chargesheet on December 1, 2018. 'The case was investigated by a junior officer, who was only a sub-inspector.
The city commissioner of police and the assistant commissioner of police had shown courage to entrust the investigation to a courageous, honest, hardworking, and intelligent officer,' the court said. Public prosecutor K.B. Mahendran appeared for prosecution.
The case is said to be the fastest one investigated by the Kerala Police and prosecuted in the state's history....