Gangster Abu Salem sentenced to 7 years in jail in extortion case

New Delhi: A Delhi court today sentenced gangster Abu Salem to seven years rigorous imprisonment for demanding Rs 5 crore as protection money from a Delhi-based businessman in 2002.

Additional Sessions Judge Tarun Sehrawat passed the order after hearing arguments on sentence by the prosecution and defence lawyers.

The court had convicted Salem in the case on May 26.

The court had, however, acquitted the other accused — Chanchal Mehta, Majid Khan, Pawan Kumar Mittal and Mohammad Ashraf — citing lack of evidence against them.

One of the accused, Sajjan Kumar Soni, had died during the trial.

In the extortion case lodged in Delhi, it was alleged that Salem had demanded Rs 5 crore as protection money from businessman Ashok Gupta, a resident of Greater Kailash in south Delhi, in 2002.

Salem was convicted under sections 387 (putting person in fear of death or of grievous hurt, in order to commit extortion), 506 (criminal intimidation) and 507 (criminal intimidation by an anonymous communication) of the Indian Penal Code.

Advocate M S Khan, appearing for Salem, had denied the allegations levelled against his client and contended that the trial in the case violated the order by which the gangster was extradited from Portugal to India.

Salem, who was extradited from Portugal in November 2005, is facing various other cases, including those related to the 1993 Mumbai blasts. He is currently lodged in Taloja prison in Navi Mumbai.

Image source: Reuters