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NIA arrests man accused of ’conspiring’ to sell wife as sex slave to ISIS

NIA arrests man accused of ’conspiring’ to sell wife as sex slave to ISIS

Mangalore Today News Network

Kannur, Feb 4: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on late Saturday night arrested 27-year-old Mohammed Riyaz, husband of the 25-year-old Kerala woman who accused him of forcible conversion.

A native of Kannur district, Riyaz has been under the scanner for forging documents in order to marry the woman and taking her to Saudi Arabia, in a bid to sell her off as a sex slave to ISIS in Syria.

The woman finally approached the Supreme Court demanding an NIA probe into the matter.

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Riyaz arrived at Chennai from Jeddah via Colombo flight. The Kerala Police which already had a look out notice against him was ready with a team at the airport.

Subsequently, he was summoned to Kochi, where he was arrested. 11 persons have been accused in the case.

Based on the statement of the victim under Section 164 of the CrPC, the Kerala police had arraigned Siyad, a resident of North Paravur, and Zeenath, mother-in-law of the victim.

Earlier, Riyaz had denied the charges of forced conversion and allegation of sending his wife to Syria calling the charges "baseless". He said, he was ready to face any investigation in the case.

It was not known immediately whether Riyaz came out of his own volition. Though, NIA sources say that the parents of Riyaz continue to be in Jeddah.

The victim and Riyaz came to know each other in 2014 in a college where they studied and fell in love.

The victim has stated in the complaint that Riyaz lured, raped and recorded her objectionable videos. He then threatened, and forcefully converted her to Islam and married her by creating forged documents.

The victim has also alleged that she was taken to Jeddah by the accused with the intention of further trafficking her to Syria.

The counter affidavit filed by the husband in the Kerala High Court which has been accessed by India Today finds Riyaz giving point by point rebuttal to charges and allegations levelled by the victim.

Riyaz blames the victim’s father for instigating her to file the case saying he had inimical relations since their love marriage in 2017.

He says that in October 2017, his wife left for Jamnagar never to return back. This forced Riyaz to file a Habeas Corpus with the Kerala HC where the victim informed the court that her marriage to Riyaz was indeed voluntary.

The affadavit further says that he never treated her as "sex slave."

Meanwhile, the NIA plans to take Riyaz to Bengaluru and Gujarat to fetch more evidences pertaining to the case. The agency will also probe the allegation of false documents being produced by Riyaz.

However, Riyaz’s lawyer told India Today that he came on his his own free will to surrender before. This is a totally fabricated case.

"The girl is playing as a tool in the hands of her parents. If their is a free and fair investigation, Riyaz’s innocence will be proved", said his lawyer.

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