A fast track court on Friday sentenced gangster Sandeep Acharya alias Raja and his associate to rigorous life imprisonment for killing judo coach Biranchi Das, who had groomed the world's youngest marathon runner Budhia Singh.
Four days after convicting the duo for gunning down the judo coach on April 13, 2008, the fast track court judge Vivekananda Das this morning pronounced the life term for Raja and Akshya Behera alias Chagala. The court also imposed a fine of Rs 10,000 on each of the accused.
The convicts would have to undergo additional one year jail term in case of failure to pay the fine.
Though the prosecution pressed for death sentence for Raja and Chagala, the judge pronounced life term observing that it cannot be treated as a rarest of rare case.
Before the quantum of punishment was pronounced, Raja's counsel Bana Mohanty pleaded for minimum punishment. Gangster and Chagala also claimed that they were innocent.
The court, which examined 28 witnesses, including five eye-witnesses, pronounced life term for the duo under section 302 (murder), seven years jail term under 120(B) (conspiracy) and three years under section 25 and 27 of the Arms Act. All sentences would run concurrently.
Raja's lawyer Bana Mohanty said his clients would appeal against the judgement and claimed that there were certain lacunae in the case.