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Indian police arrest suspect in death threat against cardinal

Cardinal Telesphore Toppo speaks with nuns at the Vatican (CNS)

Police arrested a man in connection with a death threat against Cardinal Telesphore Toppo, archbishop of Ranchi.

Jaya Roy, superintendent of police in Ranchi, in the eastern state of Jharkhand, identified the suspect as Devesh Kumar.

“He will be presented in court today (June 16) and then brought to Ranchi,” Roy told ucanews.com.

Cardinal Toppo received a letter earlier this month demanding a payment of $780,000 and threatening death if the amount was not paid.

The letter was sent in the name of the People’s Liberation Front of India, a breakaway faction of the Communist Party of India, although Roy said the suspect has no connection with the organisation.

The suspect sent the letter to settle a personal score with a man identified only as Amit, the police official said.

“Kumar mentioned Amit’s name and telephone number in the letter so that Amit would face police investigation and arrest,” Roy said.

He added that police are continuing their investigation.

Cardinal Toppo acknowledged receipt of the death threat, but said he had no idea why any organisation would have cause to threaten him.