Sting illegal, Bangaru tells court


New Delhi: Former BJP president Bangaru Laxman Tuesday sought suspension of his four-year jail term in a bribery case and told the Delhi High Court that the 2001 sting operation carried on him was “illegal” and “contrary to law”.

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Senior advocate Sandeep Sethi, appearing for Laxman, told the court that inducement during sting operation was prohibited in law.

Justice A.K. Pathak was hearing the former Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief’s plea challenging the jail term awarded to him April 28 by a trial court.

The court would next hear the case Wednesday.

Laxman sought the suspension of the four-year jail term on the ground that he was suffering from many old-age related illnesses and was a diabetes patient.

Sethi pleaded that the petitioner suffered from heart ailment and was living on one kidney.

“I am 74-year-old, have medical conditions. I am seriously diabetic and for the last four months I am in custody,” said Laxman.

A CBI special court April 28 sentenced Laxman to four years’ rigorous imprisonment after holding him guilty of accepting a bribe from a fake arms dealer in a 10-year-old graft case and also fined him Rs.1 lakh.

The case dates to 2001 when news portal carried out a sting operation that caught Laxman on camera receiving money from a journalist posing as an arms dealer. He later resigned as BJP chief.

Tehelka had released CDs showing Laxman accepting money for promise of assistance to a fictitious Britain-based company M/s West End International in securing a contract for the supply of thermal imagers to the Indian Army.