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Eight years of trial ended in the acquittal of a woman, accused of smuggling illicit liquor, when police in a court here presented an empty canister allegedly used to carry the alcohol.

In her judgment Thursday, Metropolitan Magistrate Lovleen observed that the illicit liquor was never produced in the court and thus the woman, Sarita, stands acquitted.

“The container allegedly being carried by the accused was found to be empty as revealed from the records on the judicial file,” said judge Lovleen.

The case dates back to Nov 16, 2003 when Delhi Police claimed to have recovered a plastic can containing illicit liquor from Sarita at Madipur locality in Punjabi Bagh area of the capital.

Police constable Dharambir, who is also witness in the case, claimed that the recovery was made when he was on patrol duty in the area.

Another witness, also a police official, stated that the investigating officer sealed the canister.

But when the can was presented in court there was no liquor in it.

The court said chances of fabrication with the case property could not be ruled out.

The court, however, gave the benefit of doubt to the accused after the prosecution failed to give any plausible explanation about where the illicit liquor had disappeared.

The court pulled up the police for not making “sincere efforts” in getting independent witnesses to support their claims.



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