UK suspect arrested in abduction case

Scotland Yard has arrested a 22-year-old man in London for his involvement in the kidnapping of a Sri Lankan born British couple in Chennai, the Times of India reported.

The accused was arrested from the Swanage/Dorest area by the Metropolitan Police kidnap and specialist investigations unit.

Speaking to TOI, the Metropolitan Police said that “even though the couple have been rescued by the police, it is an ongoing investigation. The kidnapping was a planned operation run jointly by gangs in India and UK”.

Scotland Yard added “The Metropolitan Police Service have been working with Indian authorities to secure the release of two British nationals kidnapped in Chennai since 29th May. The investigation was led by the Chennai police with the MPS offering support to the family in London. The couple have now been rescued and are safe and well. This remains an ongoing investigation.”

The British couple of Sri Lankan origin Thavaraja (59) and Jalaja (55) were kidnapped from Chennai during their visit to India after attending a wedding in Sri Lanka.

The couple’s daughter Dharshini, a doctor in London received a call from the kidnappers in London asking for a £300,000 ransom (Rs 3 crore).

The victims had flown to Colombo for a wedding, before flying to India for a nine-day temple tour.

When they landed in Chennai, two men holding a placard bearing the names of Thavaraja and the hotel they were to stay in, escorted them to a car.

Near the airport exit, two others got into the car. Another car with other members of the gang followed behind, police said.

Before the couple realized what was happening, the gang members snatched their mobile phones at knife point.

The pair were rescued from a car in Mandarakuppam village, 122 miles (180km) from Chennai, on Sunday night.