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HindustanTimes Thu,17 Apr 2014

Delhi gangrape: verdict on juvenile accused deferred

Agencies  New Delhi, August 05, 2013
First Published: 12:01 IST(5/8/2013) | Last Updated: 15:52 IST(5/8/2013)

The verdict on Monday in Delhi gang-rape case involving a minor has been deferred till August 19 by the Juvenile Justice Board, according to Press Trust of India (PTI).

Earlier, the verdict was deferred from July 11 to July 25 and was again delayed on Thursday by principal magistrate Geetanjli Goel to August 5 because of a legal challenge.

The crime, which saw the 23-year-old victim die of internal injuries inflicted during the savage attack on a moving bus, generated widespread anger about endemic sex crime in India.

Public outrage and protests pushed Parliament to pass a new law toughening sentences for rapists, while a round of public soul-searching sought to explain the rising tide of violence against women.

The trial of the adult suspects -- one of whom died in jail from a suspected suicide in March -- continues in a separate court but is expected to wrap up in the next few months.

The juvenile, a runaway who reportedly left home aged 11, can be sent to a correctional facility for a maximum three-year term, which will take into account the time he has already spent in custody.

The four remaining adults could face the death penalty if convicted.

The teenager, the youngest of six children according to his mother, was employed to clean the bus allegedly used for the attack and often slept rough or inside the vehicle, reports say.

He has denied any involvement in the crime.

The parents of the victim were present inside the small courtroom on Thursday.

They have called for the killers of their daughter to be hanged and have criticised what they see as the leniency of the juvenile justice system, which seeks to reform rather than punish criminals under 18.

A sentence of three years' detention for the teenager would likely cause further public anger in India where the suspects, some of whom have been beaten up in jail, are hate figures.

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The fifth adult, alleged ringleader Ram Singh, died in jail in an apparent suicide.

Read more:
Rapists nervous on turning killers
Most outrageous remarks on rape
Justice for a braveheart: the story unfolds
Main accused Ram Singh found hanging inside Tihar jail

Brain injury an 'important cause' in gangrape victim's death
Juvenile accused raped woman twice and ripped off her intestine

(With HTC, AFP, PTI, IANS inputs)
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