Case to be registered against 28 persons

Biratnagar, May 1

Following completion of investigation, a case will be filed at Morang District Court tomorrow against 28 persons detained so far in connection with the smuggling of 33kg gold and a related murder.

After the District Police Office of Morang completed its investigation and handed over the investigation report on Sunday, three days before the court’s custodial permission expired, the District Attorney Office of Morang is preparing to file a case against those detained that also includes some policemen — serving and retired — at Morang District Court tomorrow.

The main accused in the smuggling, Chudamani Upreti, alias Gore, as well as 20 others are at large.

“We’ve almost prepared the charge-sheet and will file murder and abduction case against them,” informed District Attorney Punya Prasad Pathak.

After 33 kg gold brought through Tribhuvan International Airport mysteriously disappeared on the way before reaching the destination, the smugglers had detained its carrier Sanam Shakya and tortured him to death in Urlabari, Morang,  on March 2, apparently in a bid to prise information out of him. His body was retrieved from a jeep in Biratnagar the next day.

While police arrested a few persons involved in the incident on the same day, a number of other persons involved in the racket were arrested later.

The persons detained so far also include five serving and one retired policemen. Former Deputy Inspector General Govind Niraula, Superintendent of Police Bikashraj Khanal, DSPs Sanjaya Raut and Prajit KC, Sub-inspector Balkrishna Sanjel and police constable Bishnu Khadka have been detained in connection with the case so far.

Another police officer, Senior Superintendent of Police Dibesh Lohani, following instruction of the probe committee formed by the Home Minister, has been summoned to Biratnagar. He presented himself at the District Police Office today.

Police haven’t revealed whether Lohani has been taken into custody.

Besides Shakya, two others, whose involvement had been reckoned in the smuggling, have also died.