A key accused in the Bhima Koregaon case has moved the Bombay High Court after a US firm revealed that a hacker had planted incriminating evidence on his computer. A report by Arsenal Consulting, a digital forensic analyst from Chelsea, US, has debunked the electronic evidence gathered by India’s National Investigation Agency to arrest Rona Wilson and 15 others in the Bhima Koregaon violence case. Among the arrested is 83-year-old Jesuit Father Stan Swamy, who has been working among tribal communities in the eastern Indian state of Jharkhand.
They were arrest for their alleged ties with Maoist and for inciting riots during a celebratory gathering organized to mark the 200 years of the Koregaon-Bhima battle. On January 1, 2018, the violence at Bhima Koregaon village in Pune district left one dead and injured several others, inclu-ding 10 policemen. Violence erupted after some people, reportedly with saffron flags, pelted stones at cars heading towards the village for the commemoration of the 200 years of Bhima-Koregaon war on New Year’s Day.
The US digital forensics firm, which analyzed an electronic copy of the Wilson’s laptop, concluded that an attacker used malware to infiltrate the laptop and planted documents on it.
According to a report by the Washington Post, Arsenal Consulting found that the letter — along with at least nine others — had been planted in a hidden folder on Wilson’s computer by an unidentified attacker who used NetWire, a malware, to control and spy on the laptop.
According to Arsenal Consulting’s findings, Wilson received emails that appeared to be from a fellow activist, urging him to click on a link to download an innocuous statement from a civil liberties group. But this link actually deployed NetWire, a malicious software that allowed a hacker to access Wilson’s computer.