He helped criminals with surety papers
A racketeer P. Ravichandran, involved in selling forged documents for surety purpose to help several those accused of grave crimes get out of jail, has been sentenced to undergo rigorous imprisonment for 15 years.
Underlining the gravity of crime – forging documents with the intention of bailing out anti-social elements by deceiving the courts and leading to pendency of cases in courts – the Judicial Magistrate, C. Uma Maheswari, has awarded him three-year imprisonment each on five counts.
The accused has to undergo the punishment consecutively.
He was charged of forgery of records, forgery for the purpose of cheating, making/possessing counterfeit seals, possession of forged documents with the intention of using them as genuine ones.
Besides, the Magistrate has also imposed a fine of Rs. 10,000 (Rs. 2,000 for each of the crime) failing which he would have to undergo an additional three-month imprisonment for each of the counts.
The Sellur police had arrested Ravichandran in 2004 at Koodal Nagar when he was in possession of forged property tax receipt, bail certificates (not filled-in) with forged signatures of President and Assistant of Muthalaikulam Panchayat, and Village Administrative Officer (Muthalaikulam), and with the fake seal of Usilampatti Taluk office, affidavit documents, and rubber stamps.
While the accused had refuted the charges against him, the officials and a panchayat president of Muthalaikulam, have clarified that the signatures on the seized documents were not theirs, but forged ones.
Report from the forensic experts proved that the seals and the signatures were forged.
The prosecution said that the occupation of the accused was preparing and selling forged documents and was involved in several such cases in southern districts.
“Several cases were pending in courts since accused (absconding after coming out on bail) did not appear before courts… it was not an ordinary crime,” the prosecution said.
The Magistrate on Friday observed that the accused had not involved in the criminal activity in a fit of anger or to take revenge on anyone, but had done it consciously to make money illegally.
He had helped the accused involved in grave crimes, who could not come out of the jail even after getting bail, due to want for surety.