Fourth Engineer Gets Life Term for Murder

During late November 2012 the fourth engineer of a shipping company was convicted to life imprisonment on finding him guilty of killing the first engineer over previous enmity in the waters of Lagos, Nigeria, in 2005. The accused, was sentenced to life imprisonment along with an additional seven years of rigorous imprisonment for disposing of the body of the first engineer. Sessions Judge convicted the fourth engineer for murder and destruction of evidence.

2013.01.09 - Fourth Engineer Gets Life Term for Murder

The murder took place on June 12, 2005, when the Great Eastern Shipping Company’s vessel Jaglila carrying oil was sailing from the US to Nigeria, the sentenced engineer got into a heated argument with the victim, and in a fit of rage pushed Singh into the sea.

According to ship Captain S K Saxena, Arvind had gone missing from the engine room. A day after Arvind’s disappearance, Chouhan had reported injuries to right hand and right eye and claimed it occurred due to chemical spillage from the engine valve.

Chouhan’s colleagues found the claim suspicious as he was not posted near the engine valve. During investigation, the police found a chemical spilled on the boiler of engine room and it helped them nail Chouhan.

The boiler was also found to have been suspiciously given a fresh coat of paint. Cops contended that it was Chouhan’s attempt to hide blood stains.

The police team found the deceased was not in his room and there were blood stains outside his room. The stains led them to the end of the ship, indicating he was thrown overboard. The ship’s captain told cops that despite calling the victim three times, he did not respond. Also, it looked like as if somebody had tried to erase the blood stains and paint some colour on it. It was also noticed that there were some injuries on Chauhan’s left eye and hands. Initially, he denied killing Singh, but later admitted to the crime.

The case was later investigated by Mumbai Police Crime branch, after the state government ordered a transfer of the case from the local police. As many as 24 witnesses were examined in the case. Three Crime Branch officers had trailed the case till Lagos as part of investigation. Enough evidence was collected to establish enmity between the accused and the victim.

Sources: Indian Express, Mumbai Mirror, The Times of India

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