Indians shot with same gun

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By G.S. RADHAKRISHNA in Hyderabad
  • Published 18.09.08

Hyderabad, Sept. 17: FBI sleuths today began probing the weekend murders of an Andhra student and her cousin near an Illinois park even as the only concrete lead that emerged after three days was they were shot with the same gun.

St Louis County police said the bullets that killed Tummala Soumya Reddy, 23, and Tummala Vikram Reddy, 27, on Friday evening or Saturday morning appeared to have been fired from the same weapon.

While engineering student Soumya was found with a bullet in her mouth in the passenger seat of a Ford Taurus registered in Vikram’s name, her cousin’s body found in a nearby lake had a bullet in the back.

A police source said the two “may have been on their way back from a party” when they were “attacked by some blacks” with whom they “perhaps had an altercation” earlier.

Their bodies were found by some morning walkers in Maryville town from where the lake is just 30km away.

A police spokesperson had earlier said investigators were trying to find out why the two from Maryville, Illinois, “were up in such a remote area” of St Louis County.

Back home in Hyderabad, relatives of the cousins said they were either killed “elsewhere and dumped there or were taken to the lake area and bumped off”.

“Perhaps, Vikram tried to escape,” said one.

Vikram’s elderly parents, however, still don’t know their son is dead as relatives have disconnected their landline phone connection and TV set.

All that Venkat Reddy knows is his engineer son is trying to bring back the body of Soumya, his brother’s daughter.

He said his son’s wedding with a Hyderabad girl was almost fixed for December and the family was waiting for him to come down to India.

Hyderabad regional passport officer B. Bala Bhaskar said all efforts were being made to bring the bodies back as early as possible. But sources in American law agencies said it might take nearly 10 days.

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An Indian software engineer has been accused of stealing trade secrets from his former employer Intel after taking a new job at a rival company, says PTI, quoting a PC World Magazine report. Biswamohan Pani, 33, who worked as a designer with chipmaker Intel in Boston, was accused of copying classified design documents. He was charged by the FBI in a Boston district court in late August. The FBI had allegedly found eight Intel documents totalling more than 100 pages, and 19 computer-aided design drawings during a search of his house on July 1, according to the report.