Anand Jon gets 59-yr jail term for sexual abuse

There are no new grounds for a fresh trial, says US court

Rejecting Jon’s motions for a fresh trial, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge David Wesley announced the judgement, saying there were no new grounds for granting such a motion.

Thirty-five-year-old Jon, who was acting as his own attorney, showed no reaction as the judge said he should be incarcerated as long as possible for preying upon young girls and women.

Jon stared ahead blankly as Judge Wesley handed down the hefty sentence and his victims wept in the jury box.

He was convicted in November of 16 counts, including rape, sexual battery and performing lewd acts on a child. Jon was found not guilty of four felonies, and jurors could not reach a verdict on three counts.

“Jon has showed no remorse for his actions,” Wesley said. Jon also faces similar charges in New York and Texas where he has been indicted.

Judge Wesley said Jon must serve 14 years in state prison before he begins to serve a 45-year-to-life sentence. He was denied bail while he prepared his appeal. Thereafter, Jon was remanded in the custody of the state Department of Corrections. The designer has been featured on the television show ‘America’s Next Top Model’ and worked with celebrities such as Paris Hilton and Mary J Blige.

‘Poisoned apple’

Earlier,  Jon used most part of his defence to attack juror Alvin Dymally, who had reached out to his sister Sanjana, in an apparent attempt to woo her or to offer his assistance in influencing jury deliberations in his favour. Jon called Dymally a “poisoned apple” and a “renegade, runaway juror” who possibly wrecked his chances for freedom. He also blasted investigators, saying they had done a poor job and did not provide all the evidence to him.

Kerala-born Jon presented a lengthy argument saying he should get a new trial because of juror and prosecutorial misconduct, and inadequate defence by his former attorneys.
At one point in the case, Jon called his mother Shashi Abraham to the stand. Appearing as a witness, she told the court how Dymally had made casual, passing contact with her during the trial at one point, reassuring her that Jon was innocent and he would be set free.

“Under Young’s cross-examination, Abraham said she did not alert authorities early on about the contact because she was afraid,” reported Steven Mikulan on LA Weekly Blog, who was present inside the court proceedings. Mikulan wrote Jon’s speeches, except for one detour into tears, were delivered in a loud, clear voice. “I’m not perfect, but I’m not guilty,” Jon was quoted as saying. A bevy of beautiful women who said Jon sexually assaulted them filled the jury box. Some of them cried as the sentence was read by the judge.

Prosecutors said the crimes started in 2001 when Jon set up a fashion design business through which he lured would-be models to Los Angeles. The police got involved in March 2007 after a woman said she was sexually assaulted at his Beverly Hills apartment.
Jon graduated from the prestigious Parsons School of Design in New York and launched a fashion line in 1999. He was selected by Newsweek magazine as one of the world’s most successful South Asians in 2004.


A victim of racism, says family

New Delhi, PTI:  Alleging that Anand Jon was a victim of “complete racism and bias” in the US court, his family and their lawyer on Tuesday said he was not given a fair trial.

“Anand is a victim of complete racism and bias in the court. I need help. Being an Indian, being a brown, I think we are just guilty by colour out there and for justice I need somebody strong to step in otherwise we are not going to get justice,” his sister Sanjana Jon said. Anand’s mother Shashi Jon said: “He is not capable of doing anything like this.This was beyond my belief that Anand has been taken in and arrested on charges of molestation”. Sanjana said: “The police were calling Anand a stag Nigger, and they literally verbally abused him (calling him) a terrorist... I need our government to step in and fight for truth and justice.”

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