Kochi: Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate Cherian K. Kuriakose on Monday directed the Crime Branch to deposit in seven days the amount for conducting forensic examination of the hard disc and pen drive used by the deceased Rajesh, a prime accused in a case relating to the forgery of oil companies’ bills.

The court observed that an “unseen force” was turning the investigation “in a negative way.” Criticising the investigation officers, the judge said that he was afraid that the attitude of the investigation officers would only facilitate manipulation and destruction of evidence so that there would not have any evidence for prosecuting the persons involved in the case. The investigation was moving at a snail’s pace in a case in which crores of rupees were swindled, the court observed.

The court had issued the order for getting the pen drive examined by the NIC in January 11, 2008. No officer had turned up so far for collecting the report, the judge said.

The court also wrote a letter to the Superintendent of Police, Crime Branch bringing to his notice the lethargic attitude of the investigation officers.

The prosecution case was that the prime accused used to forge the bills of oil companies showing the sale of bitumen supplied them to the PWD contractors for claiming money from the government.