Malayalam actor Dileep was denied bail on Monday for the fourth time in a case related to the abduction and assault of a woman actor in February. He has been in judicial custody for more than two months, barring a two-hour parole he got earlier this month to attend his father’s death anniversary rituals.

The setback, this time from Kochi’s Angamaly Magistrate Court, comes weeks after the Kerala High Court rejected Dileep’s bail plea for the third time. Dileep has consistently claimed not to know Pulsar Suni, another key accused in the case. The police, however, claimed to have found evidence to show they knew each other. His wife Kavya Madhavan had also applied for anticipatory bail in the case.

During the hearing, the court agreed with the prosecution that if Dileep was released now, he could influence witnesses and weaken the case. The prosecution said it will file a chargesheet within 90 days.

The assault case

On February 17, a group of men had allegedly waylaid a woman actor’s vehicle in Ernakulam’s Angamaly. They were then said to have taken photos of her to blackmail her with as they assaulted her, and later fled with the car when they reached Palarivattom. Reports have said that Dileep had planned the attack on the woman as payback for a personal grudge. Several artists from the film industry have condemned him and have supported the woman actor.