Jessica murder case: Family hails Supreme Court verdict

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New Delhi, Apr 19 (ANI): Sabrina Lall, the sister of murdered model Jessica Lall, on Monday expressed satisfaction and happiness over the Supreme Court upholding Delhi High Court's verdict in convicting all accused.

Lall was shot dead by Manu Sharma on April 29, 1999, at the Tamarind Court Cafe restaurant, which was owned by socialite Bina Ramani in South Delhi.

Interacting with media after the Supreme Court order, Sabrina said: "After 11 years...I am glad that the final door has been closed on this case. It has given us a lot of relief and satisfaction that the Supreme Court has upheld the verdict of the high court. I am happy."

An apex court bench consisting Justices P. Sathasivam and Swatanter Kumar upheld the Delhi High Court judgment on Monday.

On December 18, 2006, reversing the order of acquittal recorded by the trial court, the Delhi High Court had convicted Sharma and awarded him a life sentence.

The High Court also declared two other accused in the case - Vikas Yadav and Amarjeet Singh Gill - guilty for destruction of evidence.

They have also challenged their conviction and four-year jail sentence.

Sharma is the son of senior Haryana Congress leader Vinod Sharma while Yadav is the son of Uttar Pradesh politician D.P. Yadav.

Sharma who is serving a life sentence in Tihar jail challenged his conviction and life sentence given by the Delhi High Court.

Sabrina described the apex court's decision as a triumph for a common family.

"When the accused were acquitted by the lower court, that was a time that I had lost hope...In these cases where high profile and powerful people are involved, the important message is that it is not an impossible fight. If society works together and we continue to fight and don't lose hope, it is not impossible to get the conviction...There is justice in the world and it's possible not only for me, but for all those families fighting for it," Sabrina said.

"In this case, middle-class people came out together in peaceful support. They created a movement for justice for Jessica. There are people I don't even recognise who came out in open support," she added.

Sabrina also demanded that witnesses be permitted who had turned hostile.

"Punishment to hostile witness should work as a deterrent in society. They will keep lying unless somebody is held accountable for the same," she said. (ANI)

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