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Sharjah Court upholds 25-year jail term of Indian DJ who was framed in a drug case by ‘baker’ Anthony Paul. Here is what happened

The denial of Rodrigues' appeal, following the rejection by the High Court in Sharjah, underscores the complexities of a case that has gripped international attention.

The Sharjah court has rendered a decisive verdict, rejecting an appeal by Mumbai-based DJ Clayton Rodrigues. The court’s decision, which sustains Rodrigues’ 25-year jail term, comes in the wake of a high-profile drug frame-up orchestrated by Anthony Paul, a Mira Road-based baker.

Sharjah High Court rejected the relief plea of DJ Clayton Rodrigues

Rodrigues, the unfortunate victim of a convoluted plot, was framed in a drug case and subsequently arrested by Sharjah airport authorities. The denial of Rodrigues’ appeal, following the rejection by the High Court in Sharjah, underscores the complexities of a case that has gripped international attention.

A senior officer from the Mumbai Police emphasised the next legal step, stating, “An appeal will now have to be made before the Supreme Court in Abu Dhabi.” Despite the setback, there remains optimism within legal circles that the Supreme Court will carefully consider the evidence of Rodrigues being framed in this intricate and elaborate scheme.

Anthony Paul’s bail plea has already been rejected in an Indian court

A special Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) court has already rejected the bail plea of Anthony Paul, the prime suspect in the Sharjah drugs planting case, where actor Chrisann Pereira, DJ Clayton Rodrigues and three others were wrongfully implicated. The court’s detailed 10-page order, issued in October 2023, underscored the necessity to consider the impact of Paul’s release on the victim, Chrisann Pereira, who endured “27 traumatic days” in a Sharjah prison. The court also mentioned the 25-year jail term sentenced to the DJ in Sharjah.

The court deemed the nature of the offence prima facie very serious, dismissing standard arguments about Paul being a local resident and the quantity of contraband being below the commercial quantity. Represented by advocate Alisha Parekh, Paul’s defence claimed he had no contact with the victim and was not responsible for giving her the trophy or booking her tickets. The defence argued innocence and claimed false framing, stating that there was no evidence of contraband recovery in the case.

A chargesheet in this case was filed in June 2023

Public prosecutor Wajeed Shaikh, opposing the bail plea, highlighted the severe consequences faced by the victims, with one sentenced to life and DJ Clayton Rodrigues receiving a 25-year jail term. Shaikh emphasized that due to Paul’s actions, victims experienced imprisonment in a foreign land. The court’s rejection of the bail plea was grounded in the seriousness of the offence, the potential impact on the victim, and the overall nature of the orchestrated drug-planting scheme.

These developments unfolded as part of the larger legal proceedings initiated after Paul’s arrest on 24th April 2023. In June, the police filed a 1,550-page chargesheet against Paul, his friend Rajesh alias Ravi Bobhate, and drug peddler Shantisingh Rajput. The charges encompassed sections of the Indian Penal Code for cheating, forgery, breach of trust, and extortion, along with violations of the NDPS Act. The rejection of the bail plea signals a significant milestone in the pursuit of justice for the victims targeted in this intricate case.

Background of the case

The roots of this elaborate plot trace back to Anthony Paul’s quest for revenge against five individuals, including Rodrigues and Bollywood actress Chrisann Pereira. Paul, in collaboration with Rajesh Borate, was apprehended in April by the Mumbai Police crime branch. The motive behind the framing was unravelled to be a personal dispute, with Rodrigues allegedly upsetting Paul during a shared trip to a farmhouse in 2022.

Paul’s intricate revenge plot involved Borate posing as an event manager, enticing Rodrigues with a job opportunity in Sharjah. In January, Rodrigues was given a cake containing hidden drugs. Subsequently, Paul tipped off Sharjah airport authorities about Rodrigues carrying drugs, leading to his arrest in February. The Mumbai Police’s chargesheet, submitted in connection with the Chrisann Pereira case, meticulously outlined the details of Rodrigues’ framing.

As the legal saga continues, the Mumbai Police and Rodrigues’s legal team are gearing up to present their case before the Supreme Court in Abu Dhabi. The intricate web of deception and revenge, designed to wrongfully incriminate innocent individuals, awaits further scrutiny in the pursuit of justice.

Additional Victim: Actress Chrisann Pereira’s Ordeal

Bollywood actress Chrisann Pereira emerged as the first victim in this nefarious plot orchestrated by Anthony Paul. Four months after her arrest on 1st April 2023, in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Chrisann finally returned to Mumbai on 3rd August 2023.

Having endured over three weeks in Sharjah prison, she was granted bail and subsequently acquitted, although legal procedures delayed her return to Mumbai. The prolonged ordeal prompted concerns about her mental health, highlighting the toll the unjust incarceration had taken on the acclaimed actress.

Chrisann’s return marked the end of a harrowing chapter, during which her family had expressed apprehensions about her well-being. In June, the Mumbai police filed a chargesheet in the case, unveiling evidence that shed light on how she was allegedly framed by Anthony Paul and two accomplices.

According to the police investigation, Paul harboured a grudge stemming from a dispute with Chrisann’s mother. Seeking revenge, he purportedly concealed narcotics within a trophy and handed it to Chrisann before her flight to Sharjah, subsequently tipping off the authorities.

This revelation added a layer of complexity to the case, emphasizing the personal vendetta that fueled the malicious scheme against the actress. Chrisann, known for her roles in Hindi movies such as “Sadak 2” and “Batla House,” now seeks to rebuild her life after the unwarranted turmoil she endured in the UAE.

Who are the other victims in this case?

Apart from actress Chrisann Pereira and DJ Clayton Rodrigues, Anthony Paul’s sinister plot targeted three other individuals—Ken Rodricks, Munisha, and Rishikesh Pandya. While three of them managed to escape the clutches of the orchestrated drug scheme, Clayton Rodrigues, like Chrisann Pereira, fell victim to the conspiracy and was arrested by the Sharjah police. The elaborate vendetta orchestrated by Paul, fueled by personal disputes, sought to wrongfully incriminate innocent individuals in a series of framed drug cases in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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