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Rajwinder Singh, the key suspect in 2018 murder of Australian woman, arrested in Delhi

Toyah Cordingely, 24, was found dead on Wangetti beach, north of Cairns, after what police described as a 'personal and intimate attack'.

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New Delhi: An Indian male nurse was arrested Friday in Delhi for the alleged murder of a 24-year-old Australian woman in Queensland in 2018.

The Special Cell of the Delhi Police picked up Rajwinder Singh, 38, from the G.T. Karnal Road Friday morning, for the murder of Toyah Cordingley, who was out walking her dog when she was attacked.

Cordingley was found dead on Wangetti beach, north of Cairns, after what the police described as a “personal and intimate attack”.

Australian media reported that the 24 year old, who worked at a pharmacy, had “visible and violent” injuries on her body.

Her body was half buried, and according to a report, Cordingley was allegedly strangled and was found naked.

There was a bounty of 1 million Australian dollars on Singh’s name, the highest ever offered by the Queensland Police for public information.

Sources in the Delhi Police said Singh had shifted from one place to another in India after he fled Australia four years ago – two days after the alleged murder.

The man from Punjab’s Buttar Kalan left behind his wife and three children in Innisfail Town where they lived. According to sources, the family is still in Australia. 

“Rajwinder was arrested around 6 am Friday after the police received intel that he would be around the G.T. Karnal Road area for a meeting,” police sources said.

Police sources said he had been lying low in the north Delhi area recently, adding that the man frequently changed locations and even appearances.

Sources in the police said Rajwinder had gone to the beach that fateful day after a fight with his wife.

He carried a knife and some fruits with him, he told the police during his interrogation.

Rajwinder got into an argument with Cordingley — who was also there — over her dog barking at him. “He told the girl to control the dog. They continued to argue, leading up to the attack that resulted in her death,” the police said.

Following Cordingley’s murder, the Queensland Police had released a public notice asking if anyone had visual footage of the area from 21 October, 2018 – the day of the crime. Their subsequent probe zeroed in on Rajwinder as the key suspect.

Detective Acting Superintendent Sonia Smith had said then, “We know Singh departed Cairns on 22 October, the day after Toyah was murdered, and then flew from Sydney to India on the 23rd. His arrival in India has been confirmed.”

The Australian government in March 2021 requested India to extradite Singh. The request was approved in November this year. Soon after, the Central Bureau of Investigation and the Interpol got a non-bailable warrant issued against Singh under the Extradition Act.

On 4 November, the Australian High Commission announced an Australian 1 million dollar reward for information on Singh.

After Singh’s arrest, the Queensland Police tweeted: “We can confirm a man has been arrested in India today following a significant investigation into the tragic death of Toyah Cordingley in Far North Queensland in 2018.”

Indian cops are now trying to ascertain whether anyone was helping Singh in India, though at the time of his arrest, the man was found alone.

Also read: Delhi man, who ‘killed’ his entire family, was brought back from rehab by mother ‘out of love’


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