Herald: Police release sketch of taxi driver murder suspect

Police release sketch of taxi driver murder suspect

28 Sep 2013 12:00am IST
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28 Sep 2013 12:00am IST

PANJIM: Goa police have released the sketch of one of the two murder suspects who they say is connected with the killing of a taxi driver whose decomposed body was found at Haveri in Karnataka.

TEAM HERALD
 
PANJIM: Goa police have released the sketch of one of the two murder suspects who they say is connected with the killing of a taxi driver whose decomposed body was found at Haveri in Karnataka. 
Inspector Rajendra Prabhduesai said that Prashant Naik, a native of Karwar was allegedly strangled by two men, who reportedly impersonated as tourists on the intervening night of September 21-22. 
The owner of tourist taxi ~ Toyota Innova GA-07-F-1155 ~ had filed a complaint before the Panjim police that his vehicle was missing and that he failed to get in touch with the driver. An inquiry revealed that the taxi was spotted at Ranebennue in Haveli and the person driving it was moving around suspiciously. 
“Video footage showed the vehicle was in motion at the toll naka at Ranebennue. It also showed two persons with one of them driving and a third person in sleeping position. We suspect the third person was Prashant and already dead,” he said. 
The Panjim police have sought assistance from their counterparts in Karnataka to crack the case. Preliminary investigations reveal that Prashant might have been killed on the very same day he took the “passengers” with him to Hubli from Panjim, as the body was found in decomposed state in an isolated place some 200-300 meters from the Haveri main road. 
As per the call details, the officer said, the driver answered his last call when he crossed Hubli and thereafter the mobile phone was switched off. 
Police inquiries with other tourist taxi drivers revealed that the two suspects had approached them to reach them to Hubli which they refused because the men did not posses identity proofs. 
“Since the two did not posses their identity proofs, the other drivers refused to ferry them to Hubli. Prashant agreed on a payment of Rs 8,000 ignoring his colleagues’ advice not to do so,” he said quoting the witnesses’ statements. 
The witnesses described the physical appearance of one of the two suspected murderers after which the sketch was prepared.  
The driver was with his owner for about six years and stayed on rent at Porvorim. Police have filed a case against a lodge owner for not complying with the directions of the Collector, for the two suspects stayed without producing any valid documents.  The complaint will be forwarded to the Collector for further action. 
A similar incident had occurred in the South Goa some eight to nine years ago after which the Goa police had issued advisory to all tourist taxi drivers that knowing their passengers’ record was a must. 
 
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