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Criminal lawyer: the court cannot enhance the sentence of the Convict in the Appeal of the Convict without issuing prior notice for enhancement of sentence; SC.

Supreme Court of India

Justice Ashok Bhushan

The Supreme Court of India was concerned in case titled as "Kumar Ghimirey Versus State of Sikkim" about the power of the high court to enhance the sentence of the appellant/ accused.

In the present case the high court while dismissing the Appeal of the Convict had increased the sentence without issuing any prior notice, and the sentence was increased from 7 years to 10 years.

The Supreme Court of India had allowed the Appeal and had set aside the order enhancing the sentence as no prior notice was given to the appellant for enhancement of the sentence by the High Court. It is well settled by catena of judgements that without prior notice, Supreme Court or High Court cannot enhance the sentence of the accused, when the state or complaint/ victim is not in appeal before the court seeking enhancement of sentence of the accused.

The SC further held that albeit the High Court can enhance the sentence under section 401 CrPC read with section 386 CrPC; but the same can be done only after giving notice to show cause to the accused /appellant.



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