While Kannada film actress Maria Susairaj maintained stoic silence, the other co-accused, naval officer Emile Jerome Mathew, was visibly upset when the trial court sentenced him to ten years of rigorous imprisonment on Friday.
Immediately after the court pronounced the verdict, Mathew, who was flanked by his family and the legal team, looked as if he was on the verge of breakdown. He walked out of the court in silence, and refused to speak to the media.
Susairaj, known for her calm demeanour in court, did not react to the sentencing. “It still hasn’t sunk in. I don’t feel any emotion right now. I don’t know what to think. I have no answers about what I am going to do or where I am going from here,” she said.
Even hours after the verdict, Susairaj sat in the court silent and expressionless. Jerome and his father, who looked just as shaken as his son, also refrained from speaking to the media. “It is a very bad time for me and my family and I would not like to comment,” was all that he said.
Clad in a while Salwar-Kurta, Susairaj beamed as she left the court. “We are not going to look back. Once she is home we will only think of the future,” said her brother Richard Susairaj.
While Susairaj’s family members and her counsels spent the rest of the day finishing the paperwork to get her out of prison, Mathew was sullen and constantly spoke to his family and legal team in hushed tones.