Detective In Tears, Recalls Miracle Baby’s Survival

Detective Sergeant Kumar told the court that it was a miracle to see that the baby survived, hence the name the ‘miracle baby’.
07 Jan 2022 10:14
Detective In Tears, Recalls Miracle Baby’s Survival
Nausori Highlands murder accused Muhammed Raheesh Isoof escorted to the cell block by Police Constable Pritesh Nadan at the High Court in Lautoka on January 6, 2022. Photo: Ashna Kumar

Detective Sergeant Anil Kumar was in tears at the High Court in Lautoka yesterday while describing how the toddler survived the Nausori Highlands incident.

The toddler was named the “Miracle Baby”.

Detective Sergeant Kumar was the investigating Officer of the murder case and he was the prosecutions’ 55th witness on the 12th day of the trial.

This is in the case of Muhammed Raheesh Isoof who is denying five counts of murder and one count of attempted murder charges.

Detective Sergeant Kumar was emotional when he told the court that he was given the approval by the Crime Scene Investigators to visit the scene and he saw the bodies before it was uplifted.

He was briefed of a toddler who was found crawling by the four bodies which made him cry in the courtroom as he recalled the moments of his early stages of investigations in Court.

Detective Sergeant Kumar told the court that it was a miracle to see that the baby survived, hence the name the ‘miracle baby’.

He said the toddler was at a spot where any wrong turn would have the toddler drop down the 150-metre cliff.

He said because of the toddler, the five bodies were found at the scene. Witness Setareki while he was looking for his animals heard the toddler crying so he went to check on it.

Detective Sergeant Kumar also told the court that there were four major teams of Police Officers who were involved in the case due to its seriousness.

And because of their efforts, a person of interest was identified on the same day the bodies were found which was on August 26, 2019.

He also told the court that the Police Officers had struggled to bring the bodies up to the hill where the Police vehicles were parked. They had also requested help from the villages.

Detective Sergeant Kumar said they established that Isoof had picked the deceased family from the Newworld Supermarket carpark in Votualevu and took them to Nausori Highlands. This was shown in various CCTV footages.

He further told the court that upon investigation with the Immigration Department, he found that Isoof had arrived in Fiji on August 8, 2019, and was going to leave Fiji on August 29, 2019, as per his e-ticket confirmation.

He also told the court that he had made investigations to do a background check on Isoof and through the bilateral connections, he found that Isoof was a Police special constable and a Guardforce.

He also said that Isoof was deported from Australia to Fiji where he then changed his name and went to New Zealand and later obtained a permanent residency.

The prosecution also filed a notice of motion with an affidavit for a site visit to the crime scene.

Prosecutor Semi Babitu said that a visit to Nausori Highlands would give a better understanding and view of the terrain for all parties and the Court.

However, defence lawyer Iqbal Khan objected to the site visit stating that the place would have changed after two years.

Mr Babitu said the only purpose was to show the location and where the bodies were found after which both parties then agreed to the visit.

A ruling on the motion will be delivered today.




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