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Actor Dileep Not Submitted Phone Crucial To Probe, Uncooperative: Cops To HC

The counsel representing the actor informed the court that he would seek a CBI investigation into the matter.

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Malayalam actor Dileep has not submitted an iPhone that could be crucial to the probe and is not cooperating with the investigation, alleged officers during the hearing of the anticipatory bail plea moved by the actor in a case of an alleged conspiracy to kill police officials investigating the 2017 actress sexual assault case.

Senior Advocate TA Shaji slammed Dileep, stating he could not "take the court and the prosecution for a ride," during the anticipatory bail hearing.

Dileep and the other accused had submitted their mobile phones before the Registrar General of the Kerala High Court as directed by the latter on Monday.

However, the prosecution argued that the petitioners were not cooperating with the investigation and that despite the crime branch's demand, they refused to hand over certain mobile phones used by them to the investigation officer.

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Will Seek a CBI Investigation: Dileep's Counsel

The investigation officers had submitted that Dileep was claiming that he had no knowledge of the phone in question.

"They are claiming it is not with them. But we have records that show that it was used until very recently. Over 12,000 calls were made from the phone. How are they denying its existence," asked the advocate.

Senior Advocate B Raman Pillai, representing the actor, requested that the submitted phones be under the supervision of the court and not the prosecution.

Justice Gopinath P, hearing the matter, responded, "I'm being told that this accused is being treated differently. I cannot encourage that. Tomorrow any accused can come here and say they want similar treatment."

"They cannot be allowed to. Let them surrender to the investigative process, just like any other accused. Nobody in this State has claimed such a privilege, he cannot also."
Senior Advocate TA Shaji

The court directed the registry to hand over the mobile phones produced by the actor and the others to the Judicial First Class Magistrate Court, Aluva, for further examination as per law.

Shaji argued that the court must decline the anticipatory bail so that the custodial interrogation could be carried out.

The phone in question was serviced by 42-year-old IT expert Saleesh Vettiyattil, who had reportedly died in an accident a day later. A complaint was recently filed at the Angamaly station seeking a probe into the road accident, which caused his death. The revelation by directors Baiju Kottarakkara and Balachandrakumar had exposed the conspiracy case, alleging that Saleesh's death was unnatural.

Justice Gopinath P directed the actor to cooperate with the investigation. "This is imperative for me to decide if you are worthy of bail," he said.

The prosecution also added that apart from the six phones received, they had found that there might be more phones that belong to the key accused that would need to be investigated.

The counsel representing the actor informed the court that he would be seeking an investigation by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the matter.

The judge scheduled the hearing for Thursday at noon.

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