Indian man with $633k bounty on head in 2018 Australia beach murder arrested

Updated on Nov 25, 2022 02:07 PM IST

The Queensland Police had announced a 1 million Australian dollar ($633,000) bounty for information on the whereabouts of Rajwinder Singh, 38. According to reports, the nurse left Australia following the murder, leaving behind his wife and three children.

Rajwinder Singh, arrested by Delhi Police Special Cell, for allegedly killing a woman in Australia in 2018. (Photo/Delhi Police)
Rajwinder Singh, arrested by Delhi Police Special Cell, for allegedly killing a woman in Australia in 2018. (Photo/Delhi Police)
By | Edited by Swati Bhasin, New Delhi

An Indian-origin nurse, identified as Rajwinder Singh, accused of killing an Australian woman in Queensland in 2018, has been arrested following a long spell of manhunt. The development was confirmed by the Queensland Police on Twitter. Singh was arrested in Delhi following coordination between the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and the Queensland Police Service (QPS) with assistance from the Indian Law Enforcement, a statement said on Friday. “We can confirm a man has been arrested in India today following a significant investigation into the tragic death of Toyah Cordingley in Far North Queensland in 2018,” the Queensland Police tweeted.

Singh was accused of killing 24-year-old Toyah Cordingly in Far North Queensland. She had gone to the beach to walk her dog. At the time of the incident, he was reportedly working as a nurse at Innisfail, south of Cairns.

In the statement, AFP stated that Singh may face court in India and be “subject to proceedings to Australia”.

Earlier this month, the QPS and Australia minister Mark Ryan had announced a 1 million Australian dollar ($633,000) bounty for information on the whereabouts of Singh. This was the largest-ever reward announced by the police department. Between October 28 and November 8, QPS officers travelled to India and in conjunction with AFP New Delhi had direct communication with Indian Law Enforcement for information on Singh in order to arrest him.

QPS commissioner Katarina Carroll said the arrest highlights the “excellent relationship” between the AFP, the Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department and the Indian authorities.

Ryan said the case has involved hundreds of officers, thousands of hours, a “million reasons and a billion eyes” to get justice for Toyah and her family.

According to a report by MailOnline, Toyah drove to the beach on October 21, 2018, before the pharmacy worker was allegedly attacked and murdered at the beach. Her father discovered her body the next day, buried in a shallow grave with her dog tied nearby.

Police later identified Singh,38, as a suspect, and the report further stated that he flew from Cairns to Sydney after the alleged murder before boarding a plane to India two days after the incident. Singh reportedly left behind his wife and three children in Australia.

The Queensland Police had also released images of Singh at the Sydney International Airport earlier this month, just moments before he left the country.

His family, the MailOnline report added, has, however, denied his involvement in the case, saying he is not “capable” of murder and that his departure from Australia two days after the incident was “coincidental”.

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    A journalist with 7+ years of experience, I pretty much inhale and exhale news – figuratively speaking. Cooking, reading and playing with my dog take up the remaining hours of my normal day. I have an inclination for true crime stories, and love listening to such podcasts.

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