Kochi: A Special Investigation Team (SIT) of Kerala Police on Saturday began the search and ballistic examination of weapons onboard oil tanker Enrica Lexie in the presence of Italian experts who arrived here this morning from Rome.

Police will seize and seal the fire arms, suspected to have been used by the two arrested Italian naval guards Latore Massimiliano and Salvatore Girone in the killing of two Indian fishermen off Kollam coast on February 15.

Kollam and Kochi Police Commissioners Debesh Kumar Behera and M R Ajith Kumar, also the SIT chief, respectively along with a team of police officers and forensic expert boarded the tanker followed by a 10-member Italian delegation, including two Italian ballistic experts Major Flebus Luca and Major Fratini Paolo, police sources said.

A Kollam court has permitted the police to carry out a search of the weapons and their ballistic examination in the presence of Italian experts. Encrica Lexie, is presently berthed at the Kochi oil terminal to enable police to conduct the search.

Passing orders on a petition by Doramma, wife of Jelestine, one of the two fishermen killed, seeking compensation, Kerala High Court had on Friday ordered the arrest and detention of the vessel till Monday evening.

(Agencies)