Kerala HC rejects Dileep’s plea against survivor getting report on memory card leak

The FSL report said that the hash value of the memory card had changed in the years it was kept in the custody of courts, indicating that it has been tampered with.
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In a setback to Malayalam actor Dileep in the actor assault case, the Kerala High Court dismissed his appeal against a single-judge bench order pertaining to the illegal access of memory card visuals. In April 2024, Justice K Babu passed an order to issue a copy of the investigation report by a fact-finding committee that probed into the illegal access of the memory card that contained visuals of the attack on her. Dileep challenged this order and approached a division bench of the HC.

A bench of justices N Nagaresh and PM Manoj heard the case and dismissed the appeal.

In December, 2023, the HC appointed a fact-finding committee under the District and Sessions judge to conduct an enquiry into the survivor’s allegations that the memory card which was in the court’s custody was accessed without authorisation, and that its contents were probably tampered with. In February, 2024, the survivor filed a petition seeking the HC to direct to issue a copy of the investigation report to her. In April, 2024, Justice Babu directed to hand over a copy of the investigation report to the survivor stating that it was not to be treated confidential and observed that the survivor has a right to get the report. This was appealed by Dileep.

Malayalam actor Dileep is the eighth accused in the 2017 case when the survivor actor was sexually assaulted by a gang of men, allegedly under the directions of actor Dileep. The men recorded their attack on video. Pulsar Suni, the first accused, had given a memory card with the visuals of the attack to an advocate, who in turn handed it over to the Angamaly magistrate court.

After a forensic examination at the Thiruvananthapuram lab, the memory card and pen drive carrying visuals were returned to the Angamaly court, where it remained sealed for a year, up to March 2018. For a year after that, the memory card was kept in the Ernakulam Principal and Sessions court. Afterward, the trial of the case began and the card was kept in the trial court - Judge Honey's court.

In June 2022, news emerged that the memory card was tampered with. A report from the State Forensic Science Lab (FSL) in Thiruvananthapuram said that the memory card was accessed more than once in 2018 – once in January and once in December. The report also said that the hash value of the memory card had changed in the years it was kept in the custody of courts, indicating that something has been changed within it. Subsequently, the survivor approached the High Court, demanding an investigation into this.

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Memory card with visuals of Kerala actor's assault was illegally accessed thrice
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