CANBERRA, Australia — The main suspect in the murder of a woman on an Australian beach four years ago had been arrested in New Delhi three weeks after receiving a reward of one million Australian dollars ($677,000), Australian authorities said on Friday .
Indian national Rajwinder Singh, 38, flew from Sydney to his native country the day after the body of Australian Toyah Cordingley, 24, was discovered on the coast of Queensland state on October 22, 2018.
Attorney General Mark Dreyfus said Singh was arrested on Friday following Australia’s extradition request to India.
“This case is a priority for the Australian Government and Australian agencies continue to work closely with Indian authorities to pursue Mr Singh’s extradition to Australia, to allow him to face justice,” Dreyfus said in a statement.
Dreyfus said it was not appropriate for him to comment further as the matter was before Indian courts.
Australia had sought Singh’s extradition for murder in March last year, but he was nowhere to be found.
The Queensland government on November 3 offered the largest reward in state history for information about Singh.
The reward was unique in that it did not seek a clue that solves a crime and leads to a successful prosecution. Instead, the money is offered for information that only leads to the location and arrest of a suspect.
Indian police arrested Singh the same day they received information about his whereabouts, the Australian Federal Police said in a statement.
It is unclear if the reward would be seen.
Singh was “meaning to avoid apprehension in India’s Punjab region since traveling to the country” in 2018, Australian police said.
Queensland police had traveled to India in late October and early November to work with the Australian Federal Police stationed in New Delhi to share information about Singh with Indian law enforcement.
Singh was employed as a nurse in Innisfail, a town south of the large city of Cairns, when Cordingley was murdered on Wangetti Beach, north of Cairns. on October 21, 2018. She had gone to the beach to walk her dog.
The Indian Embassy in Australia could not immediately comment on the matter.