Mumbai/Delhi: 9th January 2014
A US court has rejected Indian diplomat Devyani Khobragade’s plea seeking a one-month extension of the deadline for a preliminary hearing, the date by which she has to be indicted in a visa fraud case.
The US District Court for the Southern District of New York rejected Khobragade’s plea. The court said, an indictment or information charging the defendant with the commission of an offence must be filed within 30 days of the date of the defendant’s arrest or service of a summons in connection with such charges. It said, since Khobragade was arrested on December 12, she must be indicted by the 13th of this month.
Devyani Khobragade’s lawyer Daniel Arshack had sought extension of the indictment deadline by a month. He said that the pressure of the deadline is interfering with the ability of the parties to have meaningful discussions on the issue.
The US prosecutor Preet Bharara had, however, opposed the extension of the deadline, saying that the plea discussions can continue even after she is charged.
SOURCE: PRASAR BHARATI