2 gangsters get 10 yrs RI for extortion

The special Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act court on Saturday convicted two of the four men of Ravi Pujari gang of carrying out extortion in suburbs.

Written by Express News Service | Mumbai | Published: February 10, 2009 2:20 am

The special Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) court on Saturday convicted two of the four men of Ravi Pujari gang of carrying out extortion in suburbs.

Accused Ranjan Pujari alias Kadri and Suraj Puran Bahadur were sentenced to 10 years’ rigorous imprisonment and a fine of Rs 10 lakh was imposed on them. The court held them guilty of threatening a city-based builder to cough up an amount of Rs 5 crore.

According to the prosecution,on December 21,2007,an unidentified person had entered the premises of Ekta Builders’ office in Kandivli and beaten up Ashok Manik,a security guard. He asked the guard to pass on the message to his boss that a call should be made to Ravi Pujari. A few minutes later,two other men entered the premises and started beating up Manik again. They also opened fire at him and Manik was grievously injured in the incident.

After the incident,Ravi Pujari called up to the Powai office of Ekta Builders and owned up to the incident. He threatened the owner of dire consequences,if he didn’t make a payment of Rs 5 crore in a week’s time.

After receiving a complaint,the police immdiately arrested Bahadur. The other accused were on the run for a long time. But,later the police managed to nab three more accused—Divakar Shetty,Ranjan Pujari and Ravindra Thapa— after getting some vital informations from Bahadur during his interrogation. Two accused— Rajendra Choudhary and Rahul alias Bunty- are still at large.

The court acquitted Divakar and Thapa due to lack of evidence. Other accused were held guilty. “The prosecution had relied on the statement of a witness who was a close aide of Pujari. The witnesses had not revealed anything against my clients. Hence,they were acquitted,” said advocate Prakash Shetty,who appeared for Divakar and Thapa.

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