The special Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) court in Mumbai on Wednesday sentenced all the nine convicts, including gangster Chhota Rajan and shooter Satish Kaliya to life imprisonment in the journalist Jyotirmoy Dey murder case.
Earlier the court acquitted journalist Jigna Vora, who had been accused of instigating the murder, and Paulson Joseph.
J Dey was shot dead in Powai on June 11, 2011, allegedly at the behest of Chhota Rajan. The prosecution has examined 155 witnesses in the case, of which around 10 are reported to have turned hostile. Of the 14 accused, Vinod Asrani is dead and two are absconding. The other accused were Chhota Rajan, Satish Kaliya, Abhijeet Shinde, Arun Dake, Sachin Gaikwad, Anil Waghmode, Nilesh Shendge, Mangesh Agawane, Paulson Joseph, Deepak Sisodia and Ms. Vora.
The Mumbai Police Crime Branch filed a charge sheet in the case on December 3, 2011. On August 5, 2016, the CBI filed a supplementary charge sheet, which claimed that Rajan had told a journalist that he suspected Dey was working for the D-gang, run by global terrorist Dawood Ibrahim.
On May 30, 2011, Dey wrote an article titled ‘ Did Rajan plan hit on Kaskar?’ in which he claimed “sources believe the ageing gangster may have plotted the shooting as a desperate attempt to seize a lion’s share of the underworld pie.” On June 2 the same year, his article titled ‘ Rajan gangsters off to ‘pilgrimages’ ’ claimed that according the police , Rajan gang members are missing from their hideouts in the city.
The CBI supplementary charge sheet said Rajan told the journalist after the murder, “J. Dey was writing many articles against me in newspapers. Hence I contacted him and enquired politely whether he has any personal enmity with me. He declined but continued writing against me.. like my gang has become weak and that I am sick, my loyal people have left me etc. All such write-ups of J Dey angered me. Hence I developed an impression that he had started working for the Dawood gang. I tried to convince him before killing him. But he did not listen. I am not sure whether he was really close to Dawood gang.. but his writings made me feel like that.”