17 June 2024


Supreme Court

Naresh Chaubey Vs. Central Bureau of Investigation




Supreme Court need not re-appreciate evidence while affirming the judgments of Courts below in criminal cases

In facts of present case, the Animal Husbandry Officer, received information that wrongful withdrawal of treasury bills was being made. He constituted a Committee for scrutinizing the suspected bills. Charges were framed against the Appellant and two others for wrongful withdrawal and misappropriation of money from the treasury on the basis of the forged bills. The Appellant was convicted under Sections 420, 471, read with Section 465 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (IPC) and Sections 13(1)(c), (d) and 13(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988. The Appellant was sentenced to undergo rigorous imprisonment of three years for the offences punishable under the Indian Penal Code and two years for the offences punishable under the PC Act. The conviction and sentence of the Appellant was affirmed by the High Court, aggrieved by which the above appeal is filed.

Apex Court is of the opinion that, there is no error committed in holding the Appellant guilty of the offences alleged. Both the Courts below have thoroughly examined the oral as well as documentary evidence on record and dealt with the submissions made on behalf of the defence in a detailed manner. It is settled law that this Court need not re-appreciate evidence while affirming the judgments of the courts below in criminal cases. On examination of impugned judgments, it is found that, there is sufficient material on record to show that, the Appellant had indulged in acts of misappropriation and embezzlement of public funds by unauthorizedly processing bills which he received not through proper channel. There is necessity to repeat the reasons that have been assigned by the courts below while convicting and sentencing the Appellant.

Regarding question of sentence, the trial Court in the year 2002 observed that, the Appellant was 60 years old and was suffering from ill-health. The Appellant has undergone 20 months out of the sentence of 36 months, that he is 75 years old now and is suffering from several ailments. The sentence imposed on the Appellant by the trial court and affirmed by the High Court need be modified to the period already undergone by the Appellant. The Appeal is disposed of.

Tags : Conviction Re-appreciation Evidence

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