The Andhra Pradesh Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) today filed a second chargesheet in the cash-for-bail scam case against seven persons including former Karnataka minister Gali Janardhan Reddy, two Karnataka MLAs and two suspended judges.
The chargesheet filed in the special ACB court in Hyderabad names two suspended district judges - K Lakshminarasimha Rao and T Prabhakar Rao (now under judicial custody). They are accused of trying to bribe suspended CBI court judge T Pattabhirama Rao, to secure bail for the mining baron in the Obulapuram Mining Company (OMC) case, a top ACB official supervising the cash-for-bail scam told PTI.
Besides naming Mr Reddy, the chargesheet also names two Karnataka BJP legislators, Janardhan Reddy's brother and Bellary City MLA Gali Somashekhar Reddy and Kampli MLA TH Suresh Babu and Mr Reddy's relative Dasaratharam Reddy, besides a realtor Suryaprakash Babu.
This chargesheet pertains to the second case registered by the ACB over attempts to bribe Pattabhirama Rao. The ACB had on August 13 filed its first chargesheet against him and seven others, for entering into a conspiracy to strike a bribe deal to facilitate bail for Janardhan Reddy.
The ACB sources said, Mr Reddy and others have been charged with criminal conspiracy and for accepting the bribe amount. The sources added that it was "Janardhan Reddy (during his mulaqat meetings when he was lodged at Chanchalguda Jail in Hyderabad) who allegedly told Somashekhar to try and secure bail for him at any cost".
Later, Somashekhar allegedly played a key role in the affair and struck a deal for Rs 20 crore with Yadagiri Rao in order to secure bail, following which, Yadagiri, on May 10, arranged a meeting between Pattabhirama's son and a retired judge TV Chalpathi Rao. The actual sum that changed hands was Rs 9.5 crore, the ACB said.
The ACB had in July arrested Prabhakar Rao, a family court-cum-third additional district and sessions judge of Srikakulam, along with another serving judge, K Lakshminarasimha Rao, the then chief judge of the City And Small Causes Court.
The duo allegedly had also struck a deal for the bail for Rs 10 crore, though Pattabhirama had favoured Chalpathi's offer, the agency had said.
The case was exposed by the CBI in May after the additional special judge for CBI court Pattabhirama Rao granted bail to Janardhan Reddy, while refusing the same relief to suspended IAS officer Y Srilakshmi in the OMC scam case.
Amid allegations of bribery against judge Pattabhirama, the high court suspended him on May 31 and transferred the case to ACB. The court subsequently cancelled Reddy's bail.
The ACB has so far arrested three serving judges, including Pattabhirama, besides eight others, in two cases related to the scandal.