Zee Media Bureau
Hyderabad: A special CBI court here on Thursday awarded seven-year imprisonment to extradited gangster Abu Salem in a 2001 fake passport case.
On November 18, the 3rd special court for CBI cases Judge MV Ramana Naidu had held the underworld don guilty under different sections of Indian Penal Code (IPC) for obtaining a passport under a fictitious name and address from Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh.
CBI`s senior public prosecutor TV Ramana had told a news agency that Salem was found guilty on the charges under Section 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 419 (cheating by personation), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating), 471 (using as genuine a forged document) of the IPC.
Salem, convicted earlier for criminal conspiracy and cheating under the IPC, was sentenced to seven years rigorous imprisonment (RI) and fined Rs 1,000 for each of the charge.
Salem, also convicted on the charge of forgery for the purpose of cheating, was sentenced to one year RI, and also slapped with Rs 1,000 fine.
He was also sentenced to one-year RI each on the charges of cheating by personation and for using as genuine a forged document of the IPC.
All the sentences will run concurrently.
"Salem has completed a term of around six years of imprisonment in the case," CBI`s senior public prosecutor TV Ramana said.
Salem was present in the court when the judgment was pronounced.
After the verdict, he was taken back to Mumbai by the jail authorities there.
Salem had allegedly procured the fake passport under the fictitious identity of Ramil Kamil Malik by submitting bogus documents, that included forged birth date, residential proof and name of father, to the Hyderabad Regional Passport Office, allegedly in connivance with some government officials and private persons in 2001.
In total, Salem obtained three passports--one for his wife, another for his girlfriend and starlet Monica Bedi, apart for himself.
The fake passport case was transferred to the central agency from the AP police in October 2002 and a chargesheet was filed in 2004 against 10 accused. While seven of the total accused faced trial, two were acquitted, said Ramana.
The trial against the gangster began in Hyderabad in 2009.
Three accused are still absconding in the case.
Meanwhile, the defence said they will apeal against the order in the Andhra Pradesh High Court.
Later, speaking to reporters, TV Ramana said 39 windinesses were examined by prosecution in the case and 60 documents were marked as exhibits.
He said three accused are still absconding in the case and the central agency was tracing them through Interpol adding "once they are available, case will be conducted against them also."
All the charges were proved against the accused and he (Salem) got maximum punishment of 7 years each for the offence of criminal conspiracy and cheating under relevant sections of IPC, the CBI prosecutor said.
Salem has completed six years imprisonment in the case and he has to serve one more year in jail, Ramana added.
(With PTI inputs)