Supreme Court quashed all criminal charges against the two Italian officers, Marines Massimilona and Salvatore Girone, accused of killing two Indian nationals.
The incident took place in 2012, Italy in their defense, said the fishermen were fired after they do not listen to the warnings of officials. Fishermen were approaching the MV Enrica Lexie tanker.
Both the officials were charged with murder after their arrest and faced trial in the high court. The appellant then filed a case in the Supreme court, arguing the Indian government does not have the authority to try them.
The jailing of Italian officials led to a row between India and Italy. In 2015 the two countries took the case to the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in Hague. Italy said only they had jurisdiction to try as the incident happened on International borders, India does not have jurisdiction.
Last year, PCA decided in favor of Italy but directed Italy to pay compensation to Indians who died.
“We are satisfied that the amount of 10 crores over and above ex gratia already submitted can be said to be a reasonable amount of compensation and in the interest of heirs. We believe that this is a fit case to close all proceedings in India, including criminal proceedings, in the exercise of powers under Article 142 of the Constitution. FIR 2/2012 quashed and set aside, and all proceedings from there are quashed“, the bench said.
The central government had deposited the money with the Supreme court registry. The Supreme Court asked Kerala high court to nominate two judges who will watch the process.
The Kerala government had told the court that out of Rs. 10 crores, Rs. 4 crores each will be paid to the two victims’ families and Rs. 2 crores to the boat owner, which was destroyed.
Both officials were released on bail, Latorre went back in 2014, and Girone in 2016.