SC confirms Nithari serial killer Koli''s death sentence

New Delhi, Feb 15 (PTI) The Supreme Court today upheld thedeath sentence of Nithari serial killer Surinder Koli formurdering 14-year-old Rimpa Haldar, one of his victims in the"horrifying" and "barbaric" serial rape-cum-killing episode in2005, saying it was one of the rarest of the rare cases.

"The appellant (Koli) appears to be a serial killer, andthese cases in our opinion fall within the category of therarest of the rare cases," a bench of justices Markandey Katjuand Gyan Sudha Misra said, adding that "no mercy can be shownto him."

The bench confirmed the death sentence to 39-year-oldKoli, who has also been awarded capital punishment by thetrial court in three other cases of rape and killing of youngwomen and children, including Rimpa, in Nithari village nearNoida on the outskirts of the national capital.

A total of 16 cases were registered against Koli and hisbusinessmen employer Moninder Singh Pandher (54), who was alsosentenced to death in Rimpa Haldar case, but he was acquittedby the Allahabad High Court. Pandher is facing trial inseveral of the other Nithari cases.

While confirming Koli''s death sentence, the apex courtkept pending with itself the CBI appeal against acquittal ofPandher, saying any order passed against him or in his favourcan have a bearing on remaining cases which are at the trialstage.

Relying upon the Koli''s confessional statement, in whichhe had given "graphic details" of how he used to allure andkill young girls in Noida, the bench said, "The confessionshad been made voluntarily before the magistrate and there areno defects in them."

The bench confirmed Koli''s death sentence, first awardedby a CBI special court in Ghaziabad and later endorsed by theHigh Court, dismissing his appeal in one of the 16 cases.

Describing the crime of Koli as "horrifying" and"barbaric", the court said that he used a definite methodologyin committing the murders.

"He would see small girls passing by the house, andtaking advantage of their weakness lured them inside the houseand there he would strangulate them and after killing them hetried to have sex with the body and would then cut off theirbody parts and eat them," the court said.

The court also turned down the plea of Koli that deathpenalty cannot be awarded on the circumstantial evidence.

"Although it is a case of circumstantial evidence, we areof the opinion that the entire chain of circumstancesconnecting the accused Surendra Koli with the crime has beenestablished by the prosecution beyond reasonable doubt," thebench said, adding people can be hanged on the basis ofcircumstantial evidence. .

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