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 Indian actress sentenced over TV producer killing

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BimBim



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PostSubject: Indian actress sentenced over TV producer killing   Fri Jul 01, 2011 8:11 am

Indian actress sentenced over TV producer killing

An Indian court has sentenced an actress and her naval officer boyfriend in connection with the killing of TV executive Neeraj Grover in 2008.

Maria Susairaj was sentenced to three years in jail for destroying evidence. Emile Jerome got 10 years for "culpable homicide not amounting to murder".

Both had been charged with murder. But a judge in the Mumbai (Bombay) court ruled the killing was not planned.

Mr Grover was stabbed and his body hacked to pieces, the court heard.

Both defendants had been charged with murder, criminal conspiracy, common intent and causing disappearance of evidence.

Susairaj, a model who has had some small television parts, confessed to her role in covering up the killing. But she said that Jerome had been responsible for Mr Grover's death.

Her lawyers claimed that she was not party to the killing and that there had been no conspiracy. Her lawyer is quoted saying she was "a victim of circumstance".

According to the prosecution, Jerome, to whom Susairaj was engaged to be married, had a fight with Mr Grover when he found him at the actress's home.

The naval officer stabbed the producer to death, the court heard. Prosecutors said the couple then hacked Mr Grover's body to pieces and disposed of it in a nearby forest.

The judge held that Jerome had acted on the spur of the moment and that it had not been a pre-meditated killing, so he passed the lesser verdict of "culpable homicide".

"When he [Jerome] entered the room he was calm. This showed he did not have intention [to murder]. Obviously for a fiance, in a situation where he finds a stranger with his partner, would upset a prudent man and he would lose control," sessions court judge NW Chandwani is quoted as saying by the CNN-IBN news channel.

Correspondents expect Susairaj to be freed soon, as she has already been in jail for three years. Jerome faces seven more years in prison.

Both defendants have been ordered to pay compensation to the family of Neeraj Grover. Mr Grover's family have said they are unhappy with the verdict, saying they have not received justice.

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