Calcutta, June 22: A city police sergeant, Piyush Chakraborty, was today sentenced to eight years’ rigorous imprisonment for extortion and “criminal misconduct”.
Deputy commissioner of police (headquarters) Sanjay Mukherjee said Chakraborty, who was on duty in the Shyampukur police station area on the night of June 11, 2003, had demanded money from a businessman whose car he intercepted at the Shyambazar five-point crossing.
“The anti-rowdy section of the detective department had taken up the case and Chakraborty was sentenced to eight years’ rigorous imprisonment for criminal misconduct and a two-year term in concurrence for extortion,” Mukherjee said.
Police sources said the wireless section sergeant, on duty somewhere near Girish Park on a Radio Flying Squad van, had wandered off to the five-point crossing in search of a “victim” as he could not do so in the presence of colleagues.
“Chakraborty stopped the car and threatened the businessman that he would bring charges of drunk driving against him if he did not pay up. He demanded Rs 20,000 and when the gentleman said he did not have the cash on him, Chakraborty asked him for the gold necklace he was wearing,” a detective department officer said.
Chakraborty told the “victim” that if he wanted his chain back, he should pay him the money at a designated place and time. “The man readily agreed. It was decided that he would hand the money to Chakraborty on June 13,” the sleuth said.
However, before meeting Chakraborty at a roadside stall on Park Street, the businessman tipped off then detective department chief Soumen Mitra.
“Officers of the anti-rowdy section laid a trap and Chakraborty was caught taking the money. The currency handed over to the sergeant was sprayed with a chemical and as he received the notes he was accosted by policemen in plainclothes,” the officer said.
The chemical had turned his hands crimson and he was literally caught red-handed.
A case was lodged at Shyampukur police station and Chakraborty was remanded in judicial custody by a lower court.
A judge of the second special bench of the city civil court, Alokendu Mukherjee, sent him to jail.