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Extorted money trail: Baichung surrender may weaken case

SHILLONG: The sudden surrender of GNLA commander Baichung Ch Momin, who was in possession of several lakhs of extortion money, has raised eyebrows after the arrest of three conduits, who were keeping the money in their accounts.
Sources on Sunday alleged different yardsticks on the part of police in facilitating the surrender of GNLA commander Baichung whereas three persons who were having links with Baichung were arrested.
On December 1, Solly Sangma, who had alleged links with GNLA, another lady identified as Probilla Marak, a rice shop dealer from Chokpot bazaar, and Sengchang Ch Momin, a GNLA courier, were arrested in connection with keeping the extorted money of Baichung.
According to police, these persons were trying to help Baichung transact money clandestinely by keeping it in the account of Probilla.
Legal experts have pointed out that Baichung should have been arrested instead of facilitating his surrender as this money trail case may weaken after his surrender.
Questions have been raised by several quarters as to why only the militants can surrender without any arrest whereas those who had links with the GNLA – in this case the trio – were arrested on December 1.
During interrogation, Probilla had told the police that she had received Rs 27 lakh from GNLA leader Baichung sent through some couriers and she deposited the same amount in SBI account. Later, she transferred Rs 25 lakh to the bank account of Solly.
Baichung, who surrendered before police on December 9, is wanted in several cases including extortion, murder and abduction.

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