Singh was detained in November outside the Indian capital. He was arrested three weeks after he was the target of a $1 million AUD ($7,10,020) bounty. Australia had requested Singh’s extradition from India in March 2021, but Singh was nowhere to be found.
The day after Australian Toyah Cordingley, 24, was discovered dead on the Queensland coast on October 22, 2018, Singh, 38, took a flight from Sydney to India.
Singh, an Australian citizen of Indian descent, age 38, had given up the right to contest the Australian government’s request to extradite him in order to stand prosecution for the murder of Cordingley.
Rajwinder Singh was notified by Judge Swati Sharma when he appeared via video link in a Delhi district court on Tuesday that the judges had approved of his extradition to Australia. Singh’s response to the extradition’s approval was a simple “thank you.”
Singh acknowledged that he was aware he would be returning to Australia to stand prosecution for murder and that a conviction in the case carries a life sentence in a statement he provided to a Delhi court earlier this month.
If the Indian government rapidly approves the Delhi courts’ ruling, Singh, who is now detained in Delhi’s Tihar prison, might be sent back to Australia in two to three weeks.
His extradition has already received partial approval from the Indian Foreign Ministry, but they still need to ratify the court’s final ruling, which will be delivered to the administration this week.
Singh is suspected in the murder of Toyah Cordingley, a 24-year-old Queensland woman who was killed in October 2018 while walking her dog on Wangetti Beach, north of Cairns. Her death sent shockwaves through the nation.
Police reported that she had been murdered in a “personal and intimate attack” after finding her body partially buried in the sand dunes. Following the murder, Singh, a father of three who was employed as a nurse in Australia, is alleged to have taken a flight back to India, triggering a four-year search by Australian authorities.
In 2021, they ordered his extradition, and a year later they offered an extraordinary $1 million reward for information leading to his capture. In November, Singh was ultimately located by Indian law enforcement in Delhi.
Despite the fact that extradition trials can frequently drag on for years, especially in India’s overburdened courts, Singh’s decision to waive his right to challenge his extradition to Australia has sped up the process. Singh will probably return to Australia by the end of February, according to Ajay Digpaul, the Indian public prosecutor in charge of the case.
The Australian citizen of Indian descent stated he had a “message for Australians” as he was being brought to court by police. Singh stated, “I want to go back. It is the judicial system that has been holding things up.” At the hearing, he was joined by his mother and father.
He claimed, “I did not kill the woman,” adding that he wished to “reveal all the details” to an Australian court. When asked why he had left the nation following the suspected murder of Cordingley in 2018, Singh responded, “I will explain all that. There were two killers and two victims.”
The extradition of Singh is a “high priority” for the Australian government, according to the attorney general, who also stated in November that his country will cooperate with Indian authorities to see that Singh is brought back to Australia to face trial. On November 3, the Queensland government announced the greatest reward in the history of the state for information regarding Singh.
The bounty was distinctive in that it wasn’t looking for information that would help solve a crime and result in a successful prosecution. Instead, rewards are given solely for information that results in a suspect’s capture. According to a statement made by the Australian Federal Authorities in November, Singh was captured by Indian police on the same day that they learned of his whereabouts.
According to the New Delhi police, Singh was apprehended on a highway leading to his native Punjab as a result of information supplied by Australian police and the international law enforcement agency Interpol.
Since visiting India in 2018, Singh was suspected to be evading arrest in the Punjab region, according to Australian police. An extradition agreement between Australia and India has been in effect since 2010, but it can take time.
Puneet Puneet, an Indian national who is 33 years old, has been wanted by Australia for extradition for 13 years. He left the country after being found guilty of driving under the influence and speeding in 2008 when he hit and killed one pedestrian and injured another in downtown Melbourne.