OLD BAILEY TRIAL: Jury retires to consider verdict in child sex trial

The Old Bailey

The Old Bailey

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An Old Bailey jury has retired to consider whether 11 men accused of sex crimes against young girls are guilty.

On Monday, in summing up, Judge Bevan addressed the jury directly, surmising first the case of Vikram Singh, who is charged with four counts of rape of a girl under the age of 16, three charges of rape of a girl under 13, and a further count of administering a substance with the intention of committing a sexual offence.

Judge Bevan said that when Singh was arrested he was heard by police to use the name of the victim, but his defence is that he has not committed any of the crimes and does not know her.

Singh later said that he was responding to something that the officer had said.

Judge Bevan also said that the victim picked out the row of houses where Singh lives on a drive around.

However, Singh says that this may be a case of mistaken identity, and the real man that the victim knew as Bicky may live in a different house.

Addressing the jury Judge Bevan said: “I remind you of the real danger of mistaken identity, but if you do is it a credible coincidence that the real Bicky lived next door to Vikram Singh?”

He also mentioned Singh’s wife who gave evidence in support of her husband, saying that at the time of the alleged attacks they could not have taken place in the family home.

Judge Bevan said: “Is she a truthful witness or is she doing her best to support her husband.”

The summing up in Singh’s case, which began on Friday then ended and Judge Bevan moved on to second defendant Harmohan Nangpal.

Nangpal, a former Aylesbury Market stallholder is charged with rape of a girl under 13.

Judge Bevan told the jury that there is no dispute about Nagpal’s identity in this case, but he denies the charge.

He reminded the jury 
that when the alleged victim was asked in court why she didn’t want Nangpal to be arrested she cried, and said that he didn’t deserve it.

Judge Bevan urged caution when trying to ascertain the reasons for the tears, saying although they were ‘self generated’ they should be taken only as a ‘simple demonstration of emotion’.

Judge Bevan said: “If you consider that she is telling the truth about Harmohan Nangpal then it may raise the issue of consent - as much as she liked him her consent was not true consent.”

Nangpal claims that he did not know the alleged victim, but had met her on his smoking stall.

He said that after he realised who she was, after speaking to a fellow accused man in prison, he remembered an incident with the girl.

He said that she became angry at his stall when he refused to accept a quantity of cannabis as payment for some goods, and said ‘I won’t spare you’.

When Nangpal picked up his phone to call the police he says she ran off.

Summing up, in the cases of the rest of the men is expected to finished on Tuesday, and the jury has now retired to consider verdicts.