Past reputation of accused is immaterial in criminal cases: HC
New Delhi: The Delhi High Court today said
reputation of an accused before committing the crime should
not be considered while adjudicating criminal cases when
evidence is against them.
"It was reported recently in the papers that a Cardinal,
a person of a fairly high standing in the Church, admitted to
sexually abusing young boys. What we want to convey is that
the cloak of a stature cannot be used as a cover, if otherwise
there is good and credible evidence pointing towards the guilt
of a person," Justice Pradeep Nandrajog said.
"The most pious men are found to be indulging in the
most nefarious activities. Every day, a controversy on the
issue of sexual abuse of young boys by priests is to be read
in the newspaper pertaining to the visit of the Pope to the
United Kingdom," the court said.
The court`s remarks came while dismissing an appeal filed
by an accused challenging his conviction of raping and killing
a minor girl child on the ground that he was like grandfather
to her and he couldn`t commit such crime.
"The argument of the appellant that the deceased used to
call him as her Dada and that he was a man of repute and hence
it was unbelievable that he did the crime, is neither here nor
there for the reason when the devil within would overpower the
good in a man is very difficult to comment upon," the court
"A court of law is concerned with evidence brought
before it and except in such cases where character becomes
relevant, the same has to be eschewed," the court said while
dismissing the plea of the convict and upholding his life term
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