Techie gets life sentence for cyberterrorism in Maharashtra; court says he has damaged India’s security


New Delhi: A special court in Mumbai has sentenced a computer engineer to life in prison on Friday for conspiracy to attack children at the American School in Mumbai. Additional Meetings Anees Ansari was sentenced by Judge AA Joglekar under sections 115 of the Indian Penal Code (incitement to a criminal offense) and 120B (punishment for criminal conspiracy), as well as the relevant provisions of the Information Technology Act. He was also fined Rs 35,000 by the court.

According to the prosecutor, Ansari, who was arrested by the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad in October 2014 and has been in prison since, worked as an associate geographic technician at a private company and had used the company’s computer to create a Facebook account. in a false name and publish offensive information. The prosecution accused him of supporting the terrorist group ISIS and claimed that his Facebook conversations with one Omar Elhaji revealed his desire to attack the American School in Bandra Kurla Complex, a business district in suburban Mumbai.

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During the trial, Special Prosecutor (SPP) Madhukar Dalvi cited evidence from 28 witnesses and asked for the maximum sentence for the accused. The SPP had argued that the nature of the offense does not warrant “inappropriate leniency” as the defendant was highly qualified and his expertise would of course determine the scope of his subsequent act of cyberterrorism. The court, after reviewing the evidence and material, noted: “The proven crime against the accused is certainly a detriment to society and may have caused or are likely to have caused harm to the interests of the sovereignty and integrity of India and the state security and public order”.

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“No extenuating circumstances are alleged by the accused, other than that he is highly qualified and the sole earner of the family. Of course, that should not be at the expense of the security of the nation,” the judge noted. The court further said that the law requires such perpetrators of crimes to be dealt with with the required degree of deterrence commensurate with the seriousness of the offense committed. “It does not appear to this court that the accused deserves too much lenient and liberal attention,” it noted.

(with PTI inputs)





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