Warrant for Indian student who ran over man in Australia


Melbourne : An Australian court has issued a warrant for the arrest of Indian student Puneet who ran over a teenager while estimated to be travelling at almost 150 km/hour in a 60 km/hour zone.

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The County Court heard Thursday that Puneet had not reported to police as part of his bail conditions since June 12, the Herald Sun reported.

Dean Hofstee, a 19-year-old from Queensland, was killed when Puneet, a 19-year-old cookery student, lost control on City Rd, Southbank, in October last year.

Hofstee, a nursing student, was in Melbourne for the Australian University Games.

His friend Clancy Coker, 20, was beside him when the pair were struck as they left the Mantra Southbank Hotel.

Judge Lisa Hannan Thursday issued a warrant for Puneet’s arrest, the report said.

Police executed a search warrant in Reservoir Thursday morning and arrested a 20-year-old man.

He has since been charged with the commonwealth offence under the foreign passports and law enforcements act with give a travel document to another reckless in the knowledge of how it will be used.

Puneet’s lawyer Angpal Singh told the court he had not seen his client since April or May.

He was granted bail on condition that he report to police five days a week and was due to face a plea hearing Thursday.

Hofstee’s father Peter, who came from Queensland for the hearing, said outside court it was extremely disappointing.

“He’s in India, I think he’s in India,” Hofstee was quoted as saying.

“I would certainly hope the Australian and Indian authorities cooperate to bring him back.

“We obviously indicated we were coming down (for the plea hearing), then they (prosecutors) came back to us to say that he had not been reporting in and they didn’t know where he was.

“Subsequent investigations have found that he’s flown out of the country.”

Puneet, who was a learner driver at the time of the crash, had pleaded guilty to culpable driving in February.

Police estimate he was travelling at almost 150km/h when he lost control in the 60km/h zone.

Puneet told police in an interview after the smash that he lost control when a cat ran across the road.