SSR drugs accused Keswani files bail plea, co-accused’s bail rejected

An accused in the drugs case related to late Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput, Anuj Keswani, on Tuesday filed a bail application before a special court, while the court on the same day denied bail to his co-accused Chris Pereira.

In his first bail plea filed on Tuesday, Keswani said that as per the recent Supreme Court ruling, Section 67 of the NDPS Act, which gives powers to officers to record “confessional” statements, was not applicable during pre-trial stage. The NCB has based its allegations on such statements by his co-accused, apart from claiming that it recovered commercial quantities of LSD from him. He has also sought parity with other co-accused who got bail.

Denying co-accused Pereira bail, the Special Judge VV Vidwans in his order said that investigation is at an early stage and considering Pereira’s involvement with co-accused in offences pertaining to criminal conspiracy and financing illicit traffic and harbouring offenders...it would be too early and premature for the court to grant bail to the applicant as it would affect further investigation in the case and also send wrong message in the society.

Pereira had claimed bail on the grounds that there is no evidence against him other than his own statement recorded under Section 67 of the NDPS Act and statements of his co-accused, which now have no evidentiary value in light of a recent apex court ruling which termed such statements “inadmissible” as evidence in court. He is a student, his advocate said and the quantity of contraband allegedly seized from him is classified as a small quantity under the law.

Pereira had been arrested from Goa on the alleged disclosure of co-accused Kaizan Ebrahim. The agency claims from his personal search 0.4 gm Charas was recovered.

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