In a setback to the Central Bureau of Investigation's (CBI) probe into British teenager Scarlett Keeling's death, a Goa children's court on Friday refused to give the agency a letter of request required to record statements of witnesses abroad.
The CBI had sought the letter rogatory from the court to enable it to record the statements of Keeling's mother Fiona Mackeown and Charles Carter, both of whom live in Britain.
A letter rogatory is a formal communication sent by a court, where the case is pending, to a foreign court seeking the assistance in recording the statements of witnesses living in that country.
In his order, Judge Desmond D'Costa said: "None of the statements produced before the court made out any new angle for which both witnesses, Fiona Mackeown and Charler Carter, need to be re-examined."
"This is not a fit case to exercise the somewhat extra-ordinary and discretionary powers of this court to issue the letter of request," the order said.
In its application, the CBI said both Mackeown and Carter have no plans to visit India in the near future so it wanted to record their statements in Britain.
The CBI also admitted to have examined nearly 200 witnesses about the murder and collected additional evidence to bolster its case.
The CBI has been entrusted with the task of probing the sensational murder of the 15-year-old at Anjuna beach in February last year, after the investigations by the Goa police came under cloud.