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Serial killer who poisoned to death 10 people held in AP:

Press Trust of India  |  Amaravati (AP) 

A serial killer has been arrested for allegedly poisoning to death ten people, including his relatives, using cyanide and making good with their money and gold in the last 20 months in Andhra Pradesh, police said.

Vellanki Simhadri of Eluru, arrested on Tuesday, committed the heinous crimes in Krishna, West Godavari and East Godavari districts in the last 20 months, West Godavari district Superintendent of Police Navdeep Singh Grewal said.

Simhadri, who worked as a watchman in an apartment complex in Eluru, had ventured into real estate business but dropped out as it was not profitable.

He planned to make a fast buck and chose murders as the means.

He adopted the modus operandi of mixing prasadam (sacred offering made to God) with cyanide and giving it to gullible people. The death of a person raised no suspicion as there were no injuries on the body. This way, he killed 10 persons in 20 months and escaped with a booty of over Rs 28 lakh, the SP said.

After killing his victims, Simhadri used to decamp with gold and money stolen from them. He built a house using the money, Grewal said adding the accused used various guises to lure gullible people into his trap.

He either promised people that he will give a medicine to cure chronic diseases, or tell them the secret of hidden treasures or give them rice-pulling coinHe used to give the cyanide prasadam to those who came to him and robbed them of gold and money after the murder, the SP added.

He had even killed some of his relatives in this fashion. He killed his grandmother and sister-in-law of Rajamahendravaram and looted their valuables. He also killed his house owner in Eluru, Grewal said.

Investigation into the death of a physical education teacher in Eluru last month, led police to Simhadri.

Police recovered over 250 grams of gold and Rs 1,63,400 in cash from Simhadri.

Sheik Ameenullah alias Sankar of Vijayawada was also arrested for supplying cyanide to Simhadri, the SP added.

Meanwhile, police sources said Simhadri was in fact arrested soon after he committed his first murder in Nuzividu of Krishna district in March 2018, though in connection with missing gold and cash.

The victim Tavitaiahs family did not suspect it to be a murder and completed the last rites. Later, the family found gold and cash totally worth Rs 20 lakh missing from the house.

On their complaint, the police had arrested Simhadri based on the victims phone call data. Police recovered Rs 9 lakh from him but later he was released on bail.

He went on to kill nine other people ever since before he landed in the police net again.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, November 06 2019. 19:30 IST