Karnataka: Rector murder case cracked, 3 priests arrested

Karnataka: Rector murder case cracked, 3 priests arrested

Indian Express-7 hours ago
Karnataka: Rector murder case cracked, 3 priests arrested killing of K J Thomas, the rector of the St Peter’s Pontifical Seminary, Karnataka police chief Lalrokhuma Pachaua identified the accused as Father Illyas Daniel, 

Karnataka: Rector murder case cracked, 3 priests arrested

Express News Service | Bangalore | March 22, 2014 1:57 am

Summary

Police say internal rivalry led to killing last year.

Close to a year after they began investigations into the sensational murder of a senior priest at a seminary linked to the Vatican, the Bangalore Police Friday claimed a breakthrough with the arrest of three priests, who allegedly conspired to carry out the killing.

An internal rivalry over control of seminary’s assets has been cited as the motive for the killing of K J Thomas, the rector of the St Peter’s Pontifical Seminary, on the intervening night of March 31 and April 1 last year. Karnataka police chief Lalrokhuma Pachaua identified the accused as Father Illyas Daniel, William Patrick and Peter.

Thomas was found murdered in a room at the seminary, which is involved in the training of priests, on the morning of April 1, 2013 by the principal of the seminary Fr Patrick Xavier. The case was a major challenge for the police, with pressure to crack it coming from the CM and senior Congress leaders in Delhi. A few relatives of the deceased priest from Kerala recently approached the high court, seeking a CBI inquiry because of the delay in the police probe.

Police sources said priest Illyas Daniel served at Gulbarga, William Patrick at Kengery and Peter at Shiluvepura in Bangalore. “Two more priests who were involved are still at large. We will nab them soon,” a source said. The three arrested priests were produced before a court and taken into police custody for a week. DGP Pachaua said Ilyas and his associates confessed to the offence.

He said Thomas had been working in the seminary for many years and Illyas and other accused were unhappy with him for various reasons. Also, there was resentment among the accused that many of them were being sidelined for important posts and that only a few persons were occupying important seats. They wanted to bring change in the system inside the seminary and rise to prominence, the DGP said.

“The accused persons required important documents relating to the seminary to gain prominence. These records pertained to lands that were granted to the seminary. Therefore, they hatched a conspiracy to break into the seminary and obtain these documents,” Pachau said.

They allegedly decided to execute their plan on March 31, 2013 as it was Easter time and the accused knew most at the seminary would be away and there would be no one other than Fr Thomas and a few others. Police said on the night of the murder Illyas, William Patrick, Peter and others met near the Yeshwantpur Circle and walked up to the seminary armed with rods and other weapons. “They began to break open locks of seminary rooms and started searching for the documents. Fr Thomas came out of his room and saw the accused, who then assaulted him causing his death. They left no clue behind,” the police chief said.

Police said they cracked the case following several leads. Five persons, including three priests present at the time of the killing at the seminary, were subjected to narco tests. The investigations led them to Illyas and his associates.

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About The Voice Of Bombay's Catholic Laity

Bombay Laity Ezekiel’s Chapter 3 Task as Watchman 17 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. 18 When I say to a wicked person, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn them or speak out to dissuade them from their evil ways in order to save their life, that wicked person will die for[b] their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. 19 But if you do warn the wicked person and they do not turn from their wickedness or from their evil ways, they will die for their sin; but you will have saved yourself.
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One Response to Karnataka: Rector murder case cracked, 3 priests arrested

  1. Dindi Aneco says:

    As per the story the accused left no clue behind. So their only link to the murder could be the narco test and the circumstantial evidence. Since a narco test report is not admissible as an evidence, the police story is on a weak footing already.

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