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Sikh News Air India Bomber Gets Nine Years For Perjury

Jan 6, 2005
Metro-Vancouver, B.C., Canada
Air India Bomber Gets Nine Years For Perjury
THE TORONTO STAR - January 07, 2011

Inderjit Singh Reyat, the only man ever convicted in the Air India
bombings of 1985, waits outside B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver, B.C.,
on Friday September 10, 2010.

VANCOUVER — The only man ever convicted in the Air India bombings has been sentenced to nine years for perjury at the trial of two men acquitted in the attacks.

Inderjit Singh Reyat was given credit for 17 months of time spent in pre-trial custody, so he has seven years and seven months to serve for lying at the trial of two men charged in a pair 1985 bombings that killed 331 people.

Reyat was found guilty of perjury last September for lying 19 times at the 2003 trial that acquitted Ajaib Singh Bagri and Ripudaman Singh Malik on charges of mass murder and conspiracy.

In handing down his sentence, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Mark McEwan said the effect of Reyat's perjury on the outcome of the trial is incalculable.

He said much of the evidence Reyat gave under oath was inconsistent with common sense and that his lies, just months after the guilty plea as part of the deal that included his testimony, “bespoke a deep and abiding rejection of Canadian values.”

The judge said Reyat's prospects for rehabilitation are slim.

Reyat's sentence falls short of the maximum 14 years for perjury but it is believed to be the longest ever handed out by a Canadian court for lying under oath.

Reyat has already served a 10-year sentence for manslaughter in the Tokyo case as well as a controversial five-year sentence in exchange for his testimony and an admission he helped build the bomb that downed Flight 182.

The first Air India blast killed 329 people, mostly Canadians, aboard Air India Flight 182 when it crashed over the Atlantic Ocean near Ireland after leaving Montreal.

That was an hour after a bomb-laden suitcase exploded at Tokyo's Narita airport, killing two baggage handlers who were transporting luggage to another Air India flight carrying 250 passengers.

McEwan said in finding Reyat guilty last year that the lies raise questions about the admissions that saw him serve the five-year manslaughter sentence.

Reyat said in the agreed statement of facts in that case that while he obtained materials for the explosives, he didn't construct the suitcase bombs and didn't know who did.

The Crown maintains that British Columbia-based Sikhs hatched the plot to take revenge against government-owned Air India after the Indian army stormed Sikhism's holiest shrine in Amritsar in June 1984 in an effort to oust Sikh separatists.

Prosecutors had asked for a sentence near the 14-year maximum, saying Reyat's lies robbed the families of the Air India bombing victims of justice.

source: http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/918075--air-india-bomber-gets-nine-years-for-perjury


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