Man held for raping, killing 5-year-old Navi Mumbai girl

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With the arrest of a real estate agent, APMC police on Thursday claimed to have solved the case of rape and murder of a five-year-old girl from Navi Mumbai. Police said accused Arun Pawar (42) stays in a building in Om Shanti Complex, adjacent to the one where the victim lived with her parents.

Police said Pawar, who was in charge of maintenance of the society's electricity and water supply, routinely made rounds of the buildings, and knew that the victim would be home alone in the afternoon. Taking advantage of this, he allegedly visited her residence on Tuesday and convinced her to come home with him.

"Pawar raped the victim at his residence and then choked her to death. We have gathered ample evidence against him," said senior inspector D Bhong.

Pawar has been staying in the complex for the last 10 years with his wife, and has no children of his own, police said. They, however, refused to specify what evidence they had gathered. They said while Pawar had not confessed to the crime, they would base the case on circumstantial and forensic evidence.

"Pawar has been remanded in police custody till February 2. He has been charged under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code as well as the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act," said Bhong.

The girl was found dead near her residence early on Wednesday. Medical examination had confirmed rape.

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