The man had held a grudge against his sister ever since an argument with her 3 months ago; after he kidnapped and murdered her daughter, he then turned up at her house to offer his sympathies for the girl’s disappearance
A long-held grudge over a petty family argument was what led to the abduction, and eventually the death, of the 7-year-old girl who went missing from outside her house in Airoli on Monday, revealed the police.
After Franshela Vaz went missing from outside her building on Monday, cops were of the opinion that her abductor was probably known to her. This suspicion was proved right when her uncle confessed to the crime yesterday.
The girl’s own uncle confessed to kidnapping and throttling her to death, proving that the cops were right to suspect a personal vendetta behind the crime. What’s worse, just a few hours after the murder, he then went to offer condolences to the girl’s mother, who is his sister.
Clarence Fonseca had wanted to teach his sister a lesson ever since they had had an argument three months ago. He killed her daughter on Monday and then returned to her house to offer his condolences for her disappearance.
mid-day had reported earlier that after the girl, Franshela Sophia Fransisco Vaz, was abducted on Monday, cops were of the opinion that the culprit was probably familiar to her. On this suspicion, the police brought in her uncle, Clarence Fonseca, for questioning. Clarence not only confessed to having kidnapped his niece, but said he had been waiting for a chance to do so for the past three months, ever since he had had a fight with her mother, Sheli.
According to officials, Clarence, his wife and three kids had gone over to the victim’s house for a family get-together, when his children and Franshela began to fight. Soon enough, the parents got involved in the scrap as well. Franshela’s mother told Clarence, who serves in the merchant navy, “Idhar aane se achha, tu samundar me jaake marjaa” (Rather than coming here, you should go die at sea). Clarence said he had held a grudge against his sister ever since, and had been plotting ways to get back at her.
On Monday, he waited for the victim near her building, and when she returned from school, he told her that her mother was at his house at Mira Road.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone I) Shahaji Umap said, “The accused was well aware that her mother was ill and couldn’t go downstairs to pick up her daughter, and he took advantage of this. He picked up the victim in his car at 6.03 pm on Monday, following which he is clearly visible in CCTV footage from the Airoli toll naka at 6.13 pm.”
Clarence told the police that he immediately took Franshela to a spot at Ghodbunder Road, where he strangled her with his bare hands. He even took the cops to the spot where he left her body behind some bushes after he disposed of her clothes to avoid easy identification. By the time the cops found the body, it had partly decomposed.
Clarence returned to the crime scene a second time that day, when he realised that he had forgotten his bag there. He went there with a friend who was unaware of the crime. By the time Clarence had picked up his bag and returned home to Mira Road, it was 11 pm, when he rounded up his family and headed to the victim’s house yet again — this time to offer his sympathies to her unsuspecting mother.
The accused has been charged with kidnap and murder, and was produced in court on Friday. He was remanded to police custody.
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