Mumbai: 28-Year-Old West Bengal Man Sentenced To 7 Years For Attempted Bank Robbery

Mumbai: 28-Year-Old West Bengal Man Sentenced To 7 Years For Attempted Bank Robbery

However, the accused claimed that a false case had been lodged against him.

Charul Shah JoshiUpdated: Friday, March 01, 2024, 01:36 AM IST
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The Sessions Court has handed down a seven-year prison sentence to Neelkanth Mandal, a 28-year-old resident of West Bengal, for attempting to rob a bank in Charni Road in March 2021. The accused, armed with a knife, entered the bank and demanded cash, but security successfully subdued him.

Details of the attempted robbery

According to the prosecution case filed at D. B. Marg Police Station by the bank's Assistant Manager, on March 23, 2021, the bank was operating as usual, with the complainant stationed at counter number 4. At around 9:30 am, Mandal entered the bank wielding a knife.

The complainant recounted, "The security guard swiftly pursued him. Despite this, Mandal brandished his knife, threatening the complainant to hand over cash or face harm to all present. While the security guard attempted to restrain him, the complainant hurried to the manager's office and urged him to sound the alarm."

As the chief manager activated the alarm and informed the police, Mandal freed himself and headed towards the cash counter. The guard managed to apprehend him, and other staff members joined in restraining Mandal. When the police arrived, Mandal was handed over to them and subsequently booked for attempted robbery.

Accused cries foul

However, the accused claimed that a false case had been lodged against him. He asserted that he had gone to withdraw money from his account at an ATM but was unsuccessful. Consequently, he approached the bank manager, who advised him to wait. Frustrated, the accused shouted, 'Why isn't my money coming out?' Subsequently, the bank's security guard and staff allegedly assaulted him.

The defence also highlighted during cross-examination that the complainant had admitted the accused filed a complaint on the online portal of the bank regarding a customer grievance. In this complaint, the accused stated that he lost his money due to an ATM machine fraud.

Furthermore, the defence argued that the knife supposedly carried by the accused was a kitchen knife, not a butcher knife. The court, however, disregarded the type of knife, emphasizing its dangerous nature.

The prosecution relied on the bank's CCTV footage and statements from eyewitnesses who identified Mandal entering the bank with a knife in an attempt to rob it.

The defence contended that the CCTV footage was inadmissible. The court accepted this argument since the prosecution had not established the complete chain of custody for the CCTV footage, as the concerned officer was not examined. Nevertheless, the court upheld the testimony of the eyewitnesses, stating that their identification of Mandal with a knife was sufficient to prove the case, leading to Mandal's conviction.

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