Kollam/Kochi: Two Italian marines, charged with shooting to death two Indian fishermen off Kerala coast, were on Friday shifted from prison to the Borstal School in Kochi and the case referred to the Sessions court clearing the decks for trial.
The marines, Latorre Massimiliano and Salvatore Girone, had spent nearly three months in the Central Prison at Thiruvanathapuram under judicial remand after a few days of police custody following their arrest on February 19.
A week after filing of chargesheet in the case, the two were produced before the Kollam Chief Judicial Magistrate A K Gopakuar, who issued the Committal Warrant for shifting the case to the Sessions Court.
The magistrate said in his order that since the case had reached the trial stage it was being referred to the Sessions Court at Kollam for further proceedings.
The marines were also given a copy of the chargesheet and taken to Kochi by road in the afternoon.
A decision to shift the marines from the prison to the Borstal school was taken by the state government yesterday in tune with the guidelines of the Geneva Convention on treating soldiers accused in cases.
Italian Consul General in Mumbai Giampaolo Cutillo and Defence Attache Franco Favre were present when the marines were brought to Kochi in a police van.
Borstal school at Kakkanad near Kochi is a notified prison for delinquents.