Court slaps MCOCA on Sreesanth, rejects bail

Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Lokesh Kumar Sharma denied bail to the cricketer after Delhi Police said it had also invoked the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) against Sreesanth and 25 others. Sreesanth and 16 accused have filed bail pleas. The court was told that MCOCA has been invoked against the accused as they were allegedly facilitating the illegal acts of underworld don Dawood Ibrahim and his aide Chhota Shakeel.

Rajasthan Royals players Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan and 22 others were arrested after Delhi Police intercepted telephone calls of those linked to the Mumbai underworld. Of the 26 accused, Chavan and Sreesanth's friend Abhishek Shukla have been given bail. Co-accused Ashwani Aggarwal was sent to Mumbai on a production warrant issued by a court there.

Now that MCOCA has been invoked against accused, Additional Sessions Judge Sanjeev Jain will hear the bail applications of 16 accused. Apart from the three Rajasthan players, the other accused include former IPL player Amit Kumar Singh and former Ranji players Manoj Guddewar and Babu Rao Yadav.

Bookies Jiju Janardhan, Deepak Kumar, Manan Bhat, Chandresh Patel, Ramakant Aggarwal, Rakesh, Sunil Bhatia, Kiran Dole, Ashwani Aggarwal, Mohd Yahya, Ajay Goel, Love Garg, Amit Gupta, Bhupender Nagar, Sunil Saxena, Sayed Durez Ahmed, bouncer Vikash Chowdhury and businessmen Vinod Sharma and Nitin Jain are also accused in the case.

Dawood, Shakeel prime suspects
Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar and Chhota Shakeel are prime suspects in the IPL spot fixing scandal and the Delhi Police will be naming the duo in their chargesheet. “Dawood and Shakeel are prime suspects. We will name them when we file the chargesheet in the case six months from now,” said a police official.

The police cannot invoke MCOCA against Sreesanth if the case is not registered in Delhi. If however the case is registered within Maharashtra, then the provisions of MCOCA can be invokedĀ - Advocate Tahera Qureshi

About four years ago, the Delhi government by gazette notification extended MCOCA to apply to Delhi. It had generated controversy at the time, but the provisions of MCOCA can be invoked in Delhi too, even though it is a Maharashtra Act. Even so, at most the provisions can be applied against the bookies, but ‘organised crime’ requires violence, and there is no violence in their actions - Advocate Pooja Bhojne

You can’t apply the provisions, as you need to have previously been named in at least two chargesheets for MCOCA to be applied. The next move for the accused would be to apply to the court to have the invocation of MCOCA quashed and set aside - Advocate Rajendra Rathod

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