As Indian-born fashion designer Anand Jon gets set to face perhaps the most significant hearing of his trial on April 1 in Los Angeles, his sister Sanjana Jon and mother Shashi Abraham have turned to their “motherland” for support.
At a press conference in the capital organised by students of Delhi University, the mother and daughter brought Lauren Boyette, an American model and a witness in the case who was not allowed to testify in the US. Jon has been in jail since two years following charges of sexual assault by numerous aspiring models. The prosecution is pushing for a 67-year term for him, according to which the 33-year-old will be in jail till he is 110 years old.
Boyette said that she and 100 other models had wanted to come forward and speak in favour of Jon but were not allowed.
“The Attorney told us it was fine and that we would win anyway. I am hoping I will be able to testify in the April hearing.” she said, adding that the main conspirator Holly Gavel who has alleged sexual assault, was her roommate and had confessed to her that she lied under oath, “Holly told me that Wall street was going to fund Jon’s company and he was going to be rich. She said this was a great opportunity for us to make money. She called up all the other girls and told them to lie, including me, but I refused because I don’t even know Jon,” she said.
Alleging racism, Sanjana said her brother is being held on charges such as ‘attempted kissing’, ‘touching the thigh’, ‘touching at inappropriate places.’ “He is a designer, will he not touch the model when dressing her up? Anand has taken the polygraphy test, the rape kit is negative, we have proved that Holly was in New Jersey and not New York when the said assault took place. Then why no justice? It would not have been this way if Anand was white. I want President Obama to listen. He will understand, and if he doesn’t I will fast unto death.”
Jon’s mother, Shashi Abraham broke down and said the girl alleged that she was assaulted in front of the mother and daughter. “Am I not a woman? We live in a loft, and this girl is saying my son raped her in front of me? I want justice, my son is going through a lot. The truth should come out.”
Sanjana Jon has organised a march on Wednesday at 4 : 30 pm at Teen Murti Marg.