Juvenile to be charged with rape, murder
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The Juvenile Justice Board on Thursday ordered framing of charges against a 17-year-old boy, one of the six accused in the December 16 gangrape of a 23-year-old woman who later died in a Singapore hospital.
He will be tried for the offences of gangrape, murder, kidnapping, unnatural offences, attempt to murder, dacoity, destruction of evidence and conspiracy. Since he is a juvenile, separate proceedings are being carried out before the board. But he faces the same charges as the other adult accused in the case.
The board, presided by Principal Magistrate Geetanjali Goel, ordered 'framing of notice' — the form in which charges are framed against a juvenile in conflict with law. Examination of witnesses in the case will begin on March 6.
The male friend of the gangrape victim and all witnesses who have been named in the chargesheet will be examined by the board. The trial of the adult accused is currently underway in a Saket fast-track court but the media has been restrained from reporting the proceedings.
Framing of notice has also been ordered in a case of robbery against the juvenile. According to police, the six gangrape accused had robbed a carpenter before assaulting the woman on a moving bus. She died thirteen days after the assault.
Last month, the board accepted the plea of the accused that he was a minor. Citing the date of birth as mentioned in his school records, the board ruled that he was 17 years, six months and 11 days old at the time of the offence.
The records taken from his school in an Uttar Pradesh village mentioned his date of birth as June 4, 1995. Police had earlier pressed for an ossification test to establish his age. But age documents submitted by school officials were accepted by the board, thereby ruling out any age-determination test.
The angry family of the victim said if the police didn't appeal against the ruling, they would approach a lawyer.
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