A Delhi court on Friday awarded five-year jail term to two men for smuggling counterfeit Indian currency notes having a face value of Rs 20 lakh, saying it was likely to threaten the economic security of the country by causing immense damage to its monetary suitability. District judge Amar Nath awarded the rigorous imprisonment to Samir Mansuri and Kudarat Khan, both residents of Madhya Pradesh, after they voluntarily pleaded guilty to the offences alleged against them.
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In its order, the court said, “Prosecution version goes to establish that the convicts, along with their associate Sonaul and Bhojraj and some other unknown persons, who were members of the terrorist gang, entered into a criminal conspiracy and and had committed a terrorist act of smuggling and circulating high quality counterfeit Indian paper currency/notes of 300 numbers of Rs 500 denomination and total 350 numbers of Rs 1,000 denomination, having total face value of Rs 20 lakh which act was likely to threaten the economic security of the sovereignty of India by causing immense damage to its monetary stablity…”
However, noting that both the accused persons voluntarily pleaded guilty, the judge said, “I am of considered opinion that there is necessity of showing some leniency while imposing punishment upon the accused persons but at the same time, it should be a wrong message to the society.”
The case was registered by the special cell of Delhi Police on February 25, 2015, under various sections of Indian Penal Code including 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 489-B (using as genuine, forged or counterfeit currency-notes or bank-notes) and 489-C (possession of forged or counterfeit currency -notes or bank-notes) and Mansuri and Khan were arrested after the recovery of fake Indian currency notes from their possession.
Later, on the basis of their disclosed statements, West Bengal resident Sonaul was apprehended on June 23, 2015 for allegedly supplying fake notes. The agency had claimed both the accused were trapped and 2000 fake notes of Rs 500 denomination amounting to Rs 10 lakh from each was recovered.
The case was later transferred to National Investigation Agency. Later the court framed charges against Mansuri, Khan and Sonaul last February. However, the accused pleaded not guilty and claimed trial.
However, last December, Mansuri and Khan moved the court seeking permission to plead guilty.