Juvenile murder convict freed by High Court

K P Krishnakumar, a resident of Ganesh Block of R T Nagar was sentenced to six years rigorous imprisonment (RI) in connection with a murder case by the High Court on April 23 on a State appeal. Earlier, he was sentenced to two months RI along with a fine of Rs 1,000 by the lower court on December 17, 2003.

However, Krishnakumar appealed that he be acquitted as he was a juvenile when he was arrested for the crime dated January 9, 1999. He submitted that he was 17 years, eight months and 24 days old, when he committed the crime and claimed the exemption provision of the Juvenile Justice Act 1986 (JJ Act) as amended in 2006.

Accepted the appeal

The Division Bench comprising Justice Sridhar Rao and Justice B V Pinto accepted the appeal and acquitted Krishnakumar.

The JJ Act, which came into existence in 1986 bars children below the age of 16 years being treated as criminals and lays down that they be sent to remand homes to reform instead of the prisons.

The Act was amended in 2000 extending the age limits to 18 years and the amendment came into effect on April 1, 2001. The Act was further amended fixing the beneficiaries of the Act.

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