Andhra Pradesh Police have arrested Vellanki Simhadri, who allegedly killed 10 people in the last two years, including his grandmother and sister-in-law, by giving them cyanide-laced 'prasadam'. He killed the victims in Krishna, East Godavari, and West Godavari districts between February 2018 and October 2019.
The killings came to light while the local police were investigating a suspicious death case in Eluru. Police said after suffering losses in business, Simhadri started cheating people with claims of having supernatural powers. He collected money from his victims, after which he gave them the 'prasadam'.
He reportedly began conning people on the pretext of hidden treasure and precious stones, promising them to double their accumulated gold. As a trap, the accused demanded money and gold from the victims and promised to give them "rice-pulling coins'- which believed to bring prosperity.
Since families of at least 10 contacts in Simhadri's mobile phone had reported suspicious deaths since last year, the police launched in-depth investigations. All victims have reportedly died after consuming cyanide-mixed prasadam.