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Mumbai man, repeat offender, gets death penalty for rape and murder of minor


A special POCSO Act court here on Friday awarded death penalty to a 33-year-old man for the kidnapping, rape and murder of a nine-year-old girl in the city in 2019.

The capital punishment was being given to Vadivel Devendra, the accused, as “reformation is impossible”, said judge H C Shende in the order.

In April 2019, the body of a nine-year-old girl was found in a septic tank hours after she had gone missing from near her house in suburban Vile Parle.

Police claimed that CCTV footage and other evidence pointed to Devendra’s role in her murder.

He was found guilty by the court earlier this week for rape and murder under the IPC, and offences under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.

Only eight months before the crime, Devendra had been released from prison.

In 2013, he was sentenced to seven years in jail for sexually assaulting a minor in the same area, but was granted premature release after five years.

Arguing on the quantum of punishment, special public prosecutor Vaibhav Bagade had on Thursday submitted that the repeat offence showed that there was no scope of reformation.

Defence lawyer Sunanda Nandewar, on the other hand, argued that there was no direct evidence against him, and the case did not fall under the `rarest of the rare’ category, hence death penalty should not be imposed.


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