Kottayam: The principal sessions court in Kottayam, Kerala, on Thursday (August 22) found 10 main accused as guilty in the controversial Dalit Christian Kevin Joseph murder case.

The court said it was a case of “honour killing”. The quantum of punishment will be announced on August 24.

The court began the trial of the case on April 24. The main accused includes Kevin's wife Neenu's brother Shanu Chacko. However, Neenu's father Chacko was acquitted. The court convicted 10 accused while acquitted four others.

Also read: Kerala Dalit Christian Kevin Joseph murder case: Kottayam court to pronounce verdict today (August 14)

Kevin, son of Joseph Jacob of Platharayil house, near Kottayam, was abducted and murdered by a gang led by Shanu, brother of Kevin’s wife, as the victim belonged to a lower caste.

In May 2018, the 23-year-old Kevin was allegedly killed by a gang of 14 people for marrying 20-year-old Neenu, who is from a wealthy family in Kerala. Kevin was in a relationship with Neenu. The latter couldn't get the approval of her parents, who were worried that their “prestige was at stake”, given his financial status.

A day after he was abducted, Kevin's body was found floating in a river on May 28. His head, eyes and internal organs were severely injured. Kevin and Neenu were married for three days and were forced to live separately.

Neenu’s parents were arrested after she complained to police that they were involved in the crime.

In May, experts of the forensic department in Kerala stated in the Kottayam principal sessions court that Kevin was forcibly drowned.  The report revealed that Kevin had a large amount of water in his lungs and there were indicators that he struggled while he was drowning.

Kevin was conscious when he fell into the water and at the time of the incident, the water in the pond was at knee level, stated the report.