The trial of two Italian marines who allegedly killed two fishermen off the Kerala coast will be delayed as a few foreign witnesses of the case have not yet appeared before investigators for questioning. The witnesses were on board the Italian vessel Enrica Lexie when the marines Massimiliano Latorre and Salvatore Girone allegedly shot dead the fishermen on February 15, 2012. Sources said three of the witnesses were questioned by the National Investigation Agency, which is investigating the case following a Supreme Court order, but a few others have not yet appeared before the investigators despite serving notices. “It is not clear when the remaining witnesses will be available for questioning. It seems they will take some time,” a Home Ministry official said, indicating a delay in the trial. The Supreme Court had shifted the case to the national capital saying the Kerala Police have no jurisdiction over the case and backed the decision to hand it over to the NIA. Italy had claimed that since the incident had taken place in international waters, Indian courts had no jurisdiction.
The Supreme Court ruled the incident took place not within Kerala territorial waters but within the contiguous zone.