SC to hear US national’s plea on bribery charges | Latest News India

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ByAbraham Thomas, New Delhi

The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to examine a petition filed by a foreign national who alleged that he was tortured and assaulted for not paying bribes to immigration officials in Uttar Pradesh.

The FIR, filed at Sonauli police station in Maharajganj district, however, said the petitioner tampered with the departure stamp to obtain entry into the country with fake documents (ANI)

The petitioner, Scott Boyd Knox (61), had approached the immigration officials last year in June for an emergency exit stamp to travel to the United States to visit his ailing mother.

In his petition, filed through advocate Vanshaja Shukla, Knox alleged that “he suffered humiliation and sexual assault at the hands of the officials of Gorakhpur district jail” — where he was lodged after being booked for passport forgery in June last year. Knox claimed that the officials at the immigration centre “demanded illegal gratification and since he did not succumb to it, he was illegally arrested in a criminal case”.

The FIR, filed at Sonauli police station in Maharajganj district, however, said the petitioner tampered with the departure stamp to obtain entry into the country with fake documents. Meanwhile, Scott said his passport is valid till 2031 and the visa will expire in 2025. A bench of justices AS Bopanna and Prashant Kumar Mishra issued a notice to Centre and state government.

The petitioner informed the Court that his mother was diagnosed with leukemia and was to undergo an operation on June 13 last year. Owing to her deteriorating condition, Scott wrote to the foreign regional registration office (FRRO) to get an emergency exit stamp to travel to the US. On getting no response despite writing to FRRO twice, the petitioner was advised by his travel agent to approach the immigration centre at Sonauli to get an emergency exit stamp to enable him to enter Nepal for his onward journey.

Referring to the FIR against him for which he is still in jail, the petitioner said that the charges of cheating and forgery involving Sections 420, 467, 468 and 471 of the Indian Penal Code are “not even prima facie made out.”

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