The Mumbai police on Sunday arrested an Indian man for the murder of an American woman in Bangkok two years ago. Police say the interior designer from Tampa, Florida, Wendy S Albano (52), and Ritesh Narpatanraj Sanghvi (25) initially planned to do business, but later, were in a relationship with each other. Sanghvi, a computer seller who stayed at Lamington Road, had been missing since the murder.
Wendy Albano was a well-known interior designer in the US. She has designed the home of New York baseball player Derek Jeter. (Right) Ritesh Sanghvi
The Bangkok police had found Albano’s body at Frasers Suites hotel in Bangkok on February 12, 2012. She had sharp marks on her stomach and neck, which suggested she was initially stabbed by a knife and later strangled. Sanghvi, who had stayed with her in the hotel, was missing since the murder and police learnt he had taken a flight to India.
“Since then, the embassies of the US and Thailand were continuously in touch with the Indian government regarding the murder. The government sent several letters to the Mumbai police to trace the accused, whose father, Narpatanraj, had also lodged a missing person complaint for his son at the D B Marg police station,” said a police officer from the Mumbai Crime Branch.
The police formed a special squad under the guidance of Police Inspector Shalini Sharma, Assistant Inspector Pramod Kumbhar and two constables, Hridinath Mishra and Sunil Jagdale, who are known for solving cases.
The squad visited Sanghvi’s house at Lamington Road where his parents stay, posing as courier company employees or telephone company representatives. “We learnt that Sanghvi was in India, but we didn’t know where he was. After some days, we got his mobile number from one of his friends and traced him to Parbhani in Marathwada,” said Sharma.
The police team left for Parbhani, and on Sunday morning picked up Sanghvi who had opened a mobile shop, Kaveri Mobiles, there. The police said the accused had changed his look. He grew a beard and had started
wearing Pathanis. “He rarely contacted his family members, and that made it more difficult for us to arrest him,” Kumbhar told this paper.