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Judiciary

Delhi Court discharges four accused in customs-clearance bribery case

By Jhanak Singh      06 May, 2024 04:39 PM      0 Comments
Delhi Court Discharges Four Accused in Customs Clearance Bribery Case

NEW DELHI: In a significant ruling at the Tis Hazari Court in Delhi, District Judge Naresh Kumar Laka discharged all accused in a bribery case involving alleged irregularities in customs clearance, citing the Prevention of Corruption Act. 

The case, titled CBI vs. Mahesh Kumar Sharma & Others, involved Mahesh Kumar Sharma, a retired Deputy Commissioner of Customs, and three other individuals associated with customs brokerage and trading entities.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had accused the individuals of conspiring to expedite the clearance of seized consignments at the Customs Office through bribery. The prosecution's case included intercepted communications and the recovery of a bribe amount of Rs. 1 lakh from Sharma. 

However, defense counsel Amit Grover, Prakhar Sharma, Aditya Wadhwa, and Sarthak Sharma argued that the prosecution's evidence was speculative and did not conclusively link the accused to any corrupt practices.

In his order, Judge Laka highlighted the insufficiency of substantial evidence to prove that the bribe was intended for any public servant beyond the accused. He noted that the procedures followed for customs clearance were standard, and no deviations from normal practices were established. 

The lack of direct evidence of corruption led to the acquittal of all parties involved.

This case underscores the critical need for solid evidence in corruption prosecutions and the implications of investigative shortcomings on judicial outcomes. The ruling has significant implications for the handling of bribery and corruption cases, especially involving government officials.

All charges against the accused were dismissed, their bail bonds were cancelled, and any securities were ordered to be returned.



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