Woman locked up in Kochi flat, raped and assaulted repeatedly

Report says survivor was subjected to torture including physical assault by live-in partner; photos produced with complaint show scars and burn marks on her body

Published: 09th June 2021 05:26 AM  |   Last Updated: 09th June 2021 02:26 PM   |  A+A-

Accused Martin Joseph. The bruises on the survivor’s body.

Express News Service

KOCHI: An FIR registered in Kochi has revealed a tale of torture and rape of a woman for more than two weeks. The FIR based on the 27-year-old fashion designer’s complaint says she had been locked up in a flat at Marine Drive, raped repeatedly and subjected to torture including physical assault by her live-in partner and businessman Martin Joseph of Puttekkara in Thrissur from February 20 to March 8 this year.

The Ernakulam Central police registered  the FIR on April 8 against Martin and presented it before the Judicial First Class Magistrate here the same day. The accused had beaten her up with a belt, poured hot water mixed with chilli powder on her and ill-treated her physically, the complaint alleged. Photos produced with the complaint show scars and burn marks on her body. 

The complaint stated that she and the accused had been in a live-in relationship from February 15, 2020. They had initially stayed in a flat at Kadavanthra and later moved to Marine Drive. She alleged the accused induced her to invest Rs 5 lakh in the stock market with which he did business, promising her she would get a monthly return of Rs 40,000. But he did not repay the amount. During the stay last year, the accused allegedly abused her both physically and mentally and also threatened to kill her. Finally, she left him in December 2020. Later, she came back and stayed with him again.

However, from February 20, 2021, to March 8, she had been confined in the flat and assaulted brutally. The accused raped her and took nude photos and threatened to send those to her parents. The FIR stated he had also beat her with a broom on several occasions. While dismissing the anticipatory bail plea of Martin on May 18, the Ernakulam Sessions Court observed that the accused had manhandled the woman brutally.

“The nine photos show the torture suffered by the victim at the hands of the (accused). It is seen that she was brutally manhandled,” said Additional Sessions Court Judge D Suresh Kumar while dismissing Martin’s bail plea.

The High Court on Tuesday adjourned to June 11 the anticipatory bail plea of accused Martin Joseph. The Additional Sessions Court, Ernakulam, had earlier dismissed his bail plea on May 18. In his petition, Martin claimed he is only 26 and that the woman, who hid her marital status from him initially, entered into a live-in relationship with him. When their relationship became strained, she filed a complaint alleging rape, he said. Senior advocate P Vijayabhanu, Martin’s counsel, submitted the allegations were false and that his client had no criminal antecedents.

Martin said neither had the woman given any money to him nor had he promised to return anything. In fact, he had been taking care of her financial needs and even paid her an amount to pursue a beautician course in Bengaluru, he said, adding they decided to part ways amicably following the intervention of their friends. However, she filed a complaint for reasons best known to her, he said in the petition. He said he was innocent and was falsely implicated.


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