In a relief for Italian marine Massimiliano Latorre, the Supreme Court on Wednesday allowed him to stay back in Italy till April 30. Latorre, who is facing murder charge in India along with his fellow Salvatore Girone for killing two Kerala fishermen, has been allowed to stay in Italy till international arbitration in the case ends.
The international arbitration in the case is due to begin on January 18. During a hearing today, the Indian government did not object to extension of marine's stay in Italy till international arbitration ends. The development came within hours of an Italian senator saying that Latorre will not return to India.
Latorre was allowed by the Supreme Court in September 2014 to go to Italy initially for four months after he had suffered a brain stroke. His stay there was extended subsequently.
"Massimiliano Latorre will not go back to India and work is being done on the possibility of requesting for Salvatore Girone to be able to return to Italy," Senator Nicola Latorre, head of Italian Senate's defence committee, was quoted as saying by Italy's ANSA news agency.
Girone, the other accused, is still here and Italy has been seeking his return as well. The Supreme Court on July 13 last year had allowed Latorre to stay in Italy for another six months on medical grounds, after the government did not object to his plea. The six-month period ended today.
The marines, who were on board ship 'Enrica Lexie', are accused of killing two Indian fishermen off the Kerala coast on February 15, 2012 after mistaking them for pirates.
The Supreme Court which was handling the case suspended the court proceedings relating to the trial of two marines in August last year following an order to this effect by International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) which was approached by Italy for international arbitration.