Manager held in child kidnap racket

Date: 2005-05-29

CHENNAI: The Central Crime Branch of the city police on Saturday arrested Somasundaram (48), Manager, Malaysian Social Services, near his residence in Koyambedu. The arrest was made by a team headed by Augustine Daniels, Assistant Commissioner of Police.

Mr. Somasundaram was charged with signing fake documents pertaining to about 40 children and for his involvement in the kidnap of a child from a Government Hospital in Salem in 1999.

As manager in Malaysian Social Services, he was in-charge of giving children in adoption within and outside the country, police said.

With his arrest, the number of those detained in connection with the child kidnap racket has risen to 11.

The case came to light during the first week of May, when the Otteri police received specific information about kidnapping of children from residential areas. They arrested Varadharajan, Sheikh Dawood, Navjeen, Sabeera, Manoharan, Salima and K.T. Dawood. A couple of days later, the case was transferred to the Crime Branch.

The investigators arrested Ravindranath, director, Vatsala, his wife and chairperson, and Dinesh, secretary of Malaysian Social Services, an organisation involved in accepting the children.

As news of the arrests appeared in the media, parents whose children went missing during 1998-99 thronged the police headquarters at Egmore.

Of the total 65 parents who visited the Commissioner’s office, only six were able to identify their missing children.

Among them, only three could be traced.