NEW DELHI: An Indian court found a teenager guilty on Saturday over the fatal gang-rape of a student in New Delhi, a crime that sparked revulsion and angry protests in the country, an official said.
“He has been held guilty for rape and murder and sentenced to three years subject to review,” Anil Sharma, the chief investigating officer in the case, told reporters outside the court in the capital, announcing the first verdict in the case.
The teenager, who was 17 at the time of the attack, was given the maximum penalty allowed after being tried as a juvenile, and the three years will include the time he has already spent in custody.
The 23-year-old physiotherapy student died of internal injuries after being raped and assaulted with an iron bar allegedly by six men on the night of December 16. Her male companion was also beaten up before both were thrown from the bus.
The attack brought simmering anger about endemic sex crime in India to the boil, and sparked weeks of sometimes violent street protests in the country.
The victim’s mother emerged from the court in tears, saying “he got just three years … from December onwards he has been given three years”.
The victim’s family had earlier called for the teenager to be given the death penalty, saying the juvenile justice system, which seeks to reform rather than punish, was too lenient.