New Delhi: Former Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Bangaru Laxman was convicted by a Delhi court and taken into custody for accepting a bribe from a fake arms dealer in a 10-year-old graft case.
He was convicted by Additional Sessions Judge Kanwaljeet Arora. Laxman was taken into juidicial custody and arguments on sentencing will be heard Saturday.
The case dates back to 2001, when newsportal tehelka.com carried out a sting operation that caught Laxman on camera receiving money from an undercover journalist posing as an arms dealer. He later resigned as the BJP chief.
Accepting the charges of the Central Bureau of Investigation, the court said it has established its case against Laxman for accepting bribe from a fake arms dealer.
“The CBI had been able to establish its allegation, so accused is convicted and punishable under section 9 of Prevention of Corruption Act,” the court said.
Tehelka had released CDs showing Laxman accepting money for awarding a contract to a fictitious Britain-based company M/s West End International, for the supply of hand-held thermal imagers to the Indian Army.
A Delhi court May 2011 framed corruption charges against Laxman.
The CBI, in its chargesheet, said that Laxman accepted Rs.1 lakh from the representatives of the purported firm in 2001 at his office for pursuing their proposal to supply certain products to the army.
“Tehelka portal scribes, impersonating as representatives of West End International, had held eight meetings with Laxman between Dec 23, 2000 and Jan 7, 2001, projecting themselves as suppliers of defence-related products,” said the chargesheet.