Indian boy receives 30-day jail term in US webcam spying case

May 22, 2012, 06:10 IST | Agencies

Indian American student Dharun Ravi was yesterday sentenced to 30 days in jail by a New Jersey judge for spying on his roommate kissing another man on his webcam.

The judge said he will recommend that Ravi not be deported. Tyler Clementi, Ravi’s freshman roommate at Rutgers New Jersey State University, committed suicide by jumping off the George Washington Bridge days after the spying incident in September 2010.

Sentenced: Dharun Ravi was sentenced to 30 days prison instead of the maximum of ten years for spying on his roommate. The judge also recommended that Ravi should not be deported

Ravi was not charged in connection with Clementi’s death and was convicted on 15 counts of bias intimidation and invasion of privacy charges. Sentencing Ravi, Middlesex County Judge Glenn Berman said he will recommend that Ravi not be deported.

“Down the road you can expunge this judgement,” he said. “You cannot expunge the conduct or the pain you caused.” “I do not believe he hated Tyler Clementi. He had no reason to, but I do believe he acted out of colossal insensitivity,” Berman said.

Ravi must report to the Middlesex Adult Correctional Centre May 31 for his probationary sentence. “I heard this jury say, ‘guilty’ 288 times — 24 questions, 12 jurors. That’s the multiplication,” Berman said.

“You lied to your roommate who placed his trust in you without any conditions, and you violated it. I haven’t heard you apologise once,” he added. Before the judge’s sentencing, Ravi’s mother delivered an emotional plea for leniency, during which she and her son both broke into tears.

At the end of her plea, Ravi’s mother threw herself on her son, sobbing and hugging him. The family of Clementi bitterly asked the judge to sentence Ravi to prison time. In recent days, several prominent gay activists too have made public pleas for Ravi to not be sent to prison.

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