Kozhikode: The first chargesheet in the sensational deaths of six members of a family over a 14 year period was filed by the police on Wednesday, with Jolly Joseph, who allegedly poisoned them to death, being named as the prime accused.
There are four accused in the case relating to the death of Roy Thomas, husband of the key accused, Rural Superintendent of Police and Investigating Officer KG Simon told reporters.
The three others named in the over 1000-page charge sheet filed in the Roy Thomas murder case before a court here are: MS Mathew, a close friend of Jolly, Praji Kumar, a goldsmith who allegedly supplied cyanide to Mathew, who in turn gave it to Jolly and K Manoj, a former CPI(M) activist, who helped Jolly forge various documents.
There are 242 witnesses in the case and 322 documents were produced in the Thamarassery Munisiff magistrate court. The accused have been charged under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including murder, destroying evidence and the Poison Act.
Simon said the post-mortem and chemical examiner's report on Roy's remains had clearly indicated that cyanide was the cause of death. Roy's death was at first stated to be suicide.
The post-mortem was done only after his uncle insisted on it. The SP said police had a lot of evidence against Jolly and there was no question of her husband having committed suicide.
No post-mortem was conducted on other bodies as the family had not suspected any foul play, he said.
Police had collected evidence from the remains of others who had died after exhuming their bodies.
Eight years after Roy's death on 30 September 2011, following consumption of cyanide-laced food, Jolly and two others were arrested on October 5 last year as a Special Investigation Team began its probe into the six deaths that had occurred between 2002-2016, following a complaint from Roy's US-based brother.
While Roy parents: mother Annamma Thomas died in 2002 and father Tom Thomas died in 2008. Annamma's brother Mathew died in 2014 and two relatives Sili and her one-year-old daughter in 2016. For years, Jolly had posed as a B Tech lecturer in NIT Kozhikode.
As investigations began, it was found she was not even a graduate and had fake degrees and fake NIT identity cards. After Roy's death, Jolly had got married to Shaju, whose wife Sili and daughter were among the dead. Simon said the investigating team was preparing chargesheet in five other cases as well.