Judge of the Special Court for Bomb Blast Cases K. Ganesan on Friday acquitted all the nine accused in the attack of Vellitirupur police station in Erode district by associates of sandalwood brigand Veerappan on December 20, 1999.

According to prosecution, gang members attacked the police station late in the night and inflicted injuries on two police personnel and looted fire arms and damaged the station properties including Very High Frequency (VHF) wireless sets. Prior to the committal of the case to the court of appropriate jurisdiction, the trial court in Bhavani (court of original jurisdiction) dealt with the case in which Veerappan, Sethukuzhi Govindan, Chandra Gowder and Mekke Rangasamy were listed as accused.

The court while committing the case to Erode District Sessions Court removed these names from the accused list, as three of them were killed in a police encounter while Mekke Rangasamy died. The case, since it involved “activists of the Tamil Nadu Retrieval Force (TNRF)” was committed to the Special Court (Sessions), Coimbatore. During the trial, the second accused in the case, Manikandan was also killed in an encounter at Chennai, hence the charges against him abates.