All those eagerly waiting to see notorious Telugu bidda Raghunandan Yandamuri punished severely for his alleged savage crimes against two fellow Indians in King of Prussia, PA last year will have to wait for some more time.
A Pennsylvania court today agreed to Yandamuri’s lawyer’s request for additional time to prepare for the trial.
This means that Yandamuri’s trial slated for September 9, 2013 in a Montgomery County court now stands postponed.
Yandamuri’s lawyers cited the need for more investigative work and a mental health evaluation of the alleged killer.
“Our client’s life is on the line and we need to know everything we can about the case and our client,” Yandamuri’s court-appointed lawyer Stephen Heckman told Judge Steven T. O’Neill today.
Montgomery County prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for Raghunandan Yandamuri given the heinous nature of the crimes.
A new date for the trial has yet to be fixed. But it’s doubtful that it will start this year.
Most likely, the Telugu bidda’s trial will commence in 2014.
Yandamuri has been languishing in the Montgomery County county jail since his arrest on October 26, 2012.
Even if Yandamuri escapes the death penalty, he will spend the rest of his life in an American prison.
Yandamuri Crimes – Background
Raghunandan Yandamuri, a native of the South Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, shot into notoriety for the killing of 10-month Saanvi Venna and her 61-year-old grandmother Satyavathi Venna in a kidnapping bid that went horribly awry.
The parents of the baby were fellow Telugus who lived in the same apartment complex in King of Prussia.
Yandamuri’s gambling woes led him to plot the baby’s kidnapping for ransom, a move that ended in the death of two people.
King of Prussia police quickly arrested Yandamuri, a software programmer, and charged him on multiple counts including kidnap and murder.
Despite admitting on a police video to the ‘accidental’ killing, Raghunandan Yandamuri pleaded “Not Guilty” to the charges later suggesting he’s overdosed on Tollywood films, which are noted for their bizarre plots and extraordinary twists.
Yandamuri’s wife was pregnant at the time of the murders. She’s since returned to India.
Costly for Pennsylvania
Raghunandan Yandamuri’s case is costing the Pennsylvania state a pretty penny.
Since Yandamuri did not have the money to hire an attorney, the court appointed a lawyer for him at the state’s expense.
Recently Yandamuri’s legal team sent an investigator to India at a cost of $13,044 to learn more details about the young man.
The investigator was in India from June 23 to July 13 probing into all aspects of Yandamuri’s life, starting from his birth.
Yandamuri’s legal team’s expenses are said to have run up costs of $32,400 excluding his attorney’s fees.
When his attorney’s fees are factored in, the expenses will likely exceed $100,000.
The sole consolation is that Yandamuri’s diet in jail is bland stuff and does not include Dum Biryani, a spicy favorite of Telugus.
Blow for Telugus
Postponement of Yandamuri’s trial is a huge disappointment for Telugus in North American who had eagerly been anticipating the start of the trial.
But Telugus need not despair.
Developments in other notorious cases in the U.S. involving Telugus (for instance, the groping case of Srinivasa Erramilli and the triple murder case of Lakshminivasa Rao Nerusu) should keep them engaged until the next Telugu film featuring Samantha or Ram Charan Teja releases or until Yandamuri’s trial starts.