An Additional Sessions Court in Margao in south Goa on Monday granted bail to the former Goa Tourism Minister, Mickky Pacheco, the prime accused in the Nadia Torrado unnatural death case.

The Nationalist Congress Party legislator was asked to produce a personal surety of Rs. 25000. The court also asked him to give an undertaking that he will not tamper with the evidence, will cooperate with the investigation officer and obtain permission of the police to travel abroad.

With reference to the charge against Mr. Pacheco of culpable homicide, judge P.B. Deshpande observed that the Crime Branch failed to recover any belongings from him even after his custodial interrogation, nor could the police produce any material evidence before the court or give any valid explanation.

Not interrogated

Mr. Pacheco's lawyer argued that in the past eight days he was not interrogated at all by the investigating officer and there was no reply from the Public Prosecutor on this aspect.

Judge Deshpande observed that the prosecution failed to bring on record any substantial material involving the accused under Section 304 of the Indian Penal Code which deals with culpable homicide not amounting to murder.

Earlier on Friday, he was remanded to 14-day judicial custody and sent to a sub-jail at Sada in Vasco town of south Goa. Mr. Pacheco was admitted in the coronary care unit of the Goa Medical College hospital after he complained of chest pain on Sunday evening.

He was booked for abetment to suicide, destruction of evidence and culpable homicide not amounting to murder.

Mr. Pacheco, who surrendered before the court in Margao on July 3 after evading police for nearly a month, was in police custody since July 8.

Ms. Torrado, a close friend of Mr. Pacheco, died on May 30 in a Chennai hospital, where she was admitted after she allegedly consumed rat poison on May 15.

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