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Goa murder: Star witness agrees to testify
Vicky Nanjappa | March 13, 2008 11:40 IST
The Goa [Images] police, who have been pinning their hopes on the testimony of star witness Mike Mannion a.k.a Masala, will now be able to make further progress in their probe into the death of British teen Scarlette Keeling.
According to Inspector General of Police, Goa, Kishen Kumar, Mike is willing to depose before the police. The IGP says that the deposition is crucial to the case.
Mike had said that he had seen Scarlette before she had died. Mike had also claimed that he had seen Scarlette lying on the Anjuna beach in an intoxicated state before she was brought back into the shack. He also said that she was taken to the kitchen in the shack and before he left place, he saw a man lying on top of her.
A man named Placido Carvalho, who is in police custody, is the main suspect in the case. He has been charged with raping and murdering the 15-year-old Brit.
Mike however had certain reservations in deposing before the Goa police, as he feared for his life. He had made it clear that he would come out with the truth on record only if he was given protection.
The Goa police say that they are not sure about his whereabouts. There are reports suggesting that he may have left for the UK, but some claim that he may be in Mumbai, seeking assistance from the British High Commission.
Superintendent of Police, Goa (North), Bosco George said that they are willing to travel to any place in order to get Mike's statement. He also said that full protection would be given to the star witness in the case.
In case Mike refuses to come down to Goa and testify, the Goa police could make use of the video conferencing facility which is being used in many courts across the country. He could depose before a Goa magistrate through the video conferencing, a procedure which has the approval of the Supreme Court.