Twenty-three years after Suresh Pagare (52), a labourer, was arrested in a robbery case, the sessions court acquitted him on Thursday for lack of evidence and the prosecution’s failure to prove the case against him.
On October 11, 1987, two people entered Nutan Jewellers, Mulund, on the pretext of buying jewellery. Later, three others joined them. After threatening two salesmen with knives and revolvers, they fled with ornaments worth Rs 2 lakh.
The police arrested Pagare on the basis of the description given by the salesmen. In March 1987, Pagare was granted bail by the sessions court.
In 2000, the court declared Pagare an absconding accused as he stopped attending court hearings. The police arrested Pagare again on March 29, 2009.
The prosecution examined six witnesses, including the salesman and the shop owner, Roshanlal Aacha who told the court that Pagare, armed with a revolver, had come to the shop.
Pagare’s lawyer Amrish Salunke argued in the court that Aacha had said he was not sure of Pagare’s identity. and the other salesman present during the time of robbery was also not examined. Salunke said that during the test identification parade, the investigation officer forced Aacha to identify Pagare.