Hyderabad: International evangelist KA Paul was Monday arrested by the police in Andhra Pradesh`s Prakasam district in connection with his brother’s murder.
The police took him into custody from a hotel in Ongole town early Monday. He was presented before a local court, which remanded him in judicial custody for 14 days. Two of his associates were also arrested.
His brother David Raj was found dead under suspicious circumstances in February 2010 in Mahabubnagar district. The dispute between two brothers over property led to the murder, police said.
Koteshwara Rao, Paul`s aide, who allegedly played a key role in the murder of Raj, was reportedly trying to blackmail Paul. The evangelist decided to eliminate Rao and offered a huge bribe of Rs1 crore to police to kill him in an encounter.
He had even paid Rs3 lakh and this was secretly filmed by a police officer and based on this evidence, Paul was arrested, police said.
Paul, however, alleged that he was arrested under a conspiracy by Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy and YSR Congress Party leader YS Jaganmohan Reddy.
Paul, who recently floated Praja Shanti Party, is a well-known evangelist, and was once close to some top politicians and key officials in India and abroad.
The evangelist had made a sensational allegation in 2009 that then chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy had demanded Rs 20 crore from him for the Congress Party`s poll campaign.
Reiterating his allegation last month, Paul alleged that when he refused to oblige, Rajasekhara Reddy started harassing him by booking cases against him and seizing his bank accounts.
Paul called the shots when N Chandrababu Naidu of the Telugu Desam Party was the chief minister. He was also close to then Lok Sabha speaker GMC Balayogi and several other politicians.