Chinese lawyers argued gangster Pillai was native of Hong Kong

  • Saurabh M Joshi, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: Jun 29, 2016 01:07 IST
The team of crime branch officers that went to Singapore to extradite Kumar Krishna Pillai (inset). (HT Photo)

The crime branch may have been successful in deporting gangster Kumar Krishna Pillai to India from Singapore recently, but not before a battery of lawyers from China tried to prove he was a native of Hong Kong to avoid extradition.

The gangster, too, had previously tried to prove this before a committal (lower) court in Singapore as he held a Hong Kong passport after surrendering his Indian citizenship in 2013. “He does not hold an Indian passport, which helped him make these claims before the court and for unknown reasons, the Chinese contingent also threw its weight on his side. They wanted to take him to China as their citizen, perhaps to use him against India later. However, his fingerprints and antecedents helped prove the whole thing was a farce,” said a crime branch officer, who was in Singapore.

Pillai also met his mother and a lawyer from Mumbai in Singapore two months ago. Sources said the duo went to Singapore to meet him while he was already in the custody of authorities there after a tip-off from Interpol.

After being extradited to Mumbai, Pillai was produced in an MCOCA court inside Arthur Road Jail on Tuesday and was remanded in police custody until July 7.

Sanjay Saxena, joint commissioner of police (crime), said, “Pillai’s activities were on even from overseas and we will now investigate them in detail.”

The crime branch sought his custody on the grounds that it wants to ascertain his activities after fleeing the country in 1997. The police also have his voice transcript in a 2009 extortion case and they also want to collect a fresh voice sample to match the transcript. Saxena said, “I congratulate the team headed by the deputy commissioner Dhananjay Kulkarni and inspectors Shankar Indalkar, Ajay Sawant, Vinayak Ghorpade and constable Vinod Rane. It was first time an extradition was undertaken without the help of central agencies.”

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