Ship fired 24 rounds: Cops

Police officials carry a sealed box containing materials seized from the Enrica Lexie on Sunday. 	— PTI

Police officials carry a sealed box containing materials seized from the Enrica Lexie on Sunday. — PTI

The weapons seized from Italian merchant vessel Enrica Lexie by the Kerala police special investigation team has yielded crucial evidence on the number of rounds fired by the two arrested marines, Latore Massimiliano and Salvatore Girone. Police sources claimed 24 rounds were fired from the vessel, and two of these, it is believed, killed the two fishermen.
The number of rounds was calculated from the number of bullets left in two mounted guns on board. These had 22 and 18 bullets left in them respectively. The police claimed each gun had a capacity to load 32 bullets at a time, which indicates the two had together fired 24 rounds.
“They might have opened fire using these guns, as only these offer binocular vision. It would be difficult to make a headshot from such a distance with a rifle,” said a ballistics expert.
The police seized six other rifles from the four marines on board. The weapons inventory given by the Italians to the police and ustoms authorities showed 32 items — two mounted guns, six rifles, 18 pistols and six bulletproof jackets.
In Thiruvananthapuram, defence minister A.K. Antony said the case was progressing well, and added: “The case will proceed under Indian law.” Later, after visiting the family of one of the slain fishermen in Kollam, the minister said the Centre would take steps to ensure coastal security and the safety of fishermen.

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