A case has been registered at the Kathmandu District Court against suspended cricketer Sandeep Lamichhane on the charge of raping a minor.
Government attorney Achyut Mani Neupane informed that the District Government Attorney’s Office (DGAO), Kathmandu filed the chargesheet on Monday afternoon.
Deepak Dahal, information officer at the court, said further process will move ahead only on Tuesday after the case is assigned to a bench through a draw.
The District Police Range, Kathmandu and the Metropolitan Police Circle, Gaushala had submitted the investigation report at the DGAO on October 21 after completing their investigation against Lamichhane. However, a case could not be filed against him then due to the Tihar holidays.
Police had investigated against Lamichhane under Section 219 of the National Penal (Code) Act, 2017. The Kathmandu DGAO has demanded a prison sentence of up to 12 years against Lamichhane as per sub-section 3 (d) of Section 219, which states that a person who commits rape shall be liable to imprisonment for a term of 10 to 12 years if the woman is 16 or above 16 years of age but below 18 years of age.
According to a source at the District Police Range, it has also sought compensation for the victim and police have investigated Lamichhane’s property for that purpose.
Police have presented CCTV footage of the hotel, statements, hospital report as evidence against Lamichhane.
Lamichhane has been denying the allegation against him. But according to Superintendent of Police Dinesh Raj Mainali, spokesperson for the District Police Range, Kathmandu, police have collected evidence to establish the charge against him.
“We have collected all kinds of evidence required in the case. We have also recorded statements of many,” he said.
Police have taken statements of cricketer Dev Khanal, the hotel operator, the hostel operator and others.
Police have also recovered chat conversations between Lamichhane and the girl.
Lamichhane, who is the former captain of the Nepal cricket team, has been accused of raping a minor multiple times in a hotel room in Kathmandu on August 21.
A 17-year-old girl filed a rape complaint against Lamichhane at the Gaushala Police Circle on September 6. Police also conducted a health check-up of the girl the same day after receiving the complaint.
The girl has complained that Lamichhane took her out to different places of Bhaktapur and Kathmandu on August 21, a day before Lamichhane left for the bilateral series with Kenya.
She has accused Lamichhane of raping her multiple times in room number 305 of a hotel in Kathmandu Metropolitan City Ward Number 9 that night.
Police have also collected CCTV footage of the night from the hotel. The footage shows that Lamichhane had stayed at the hotel for seven hours.
The girl has claimed in her complaint that she had gone to Nagarkot with Lamichhane on August 17 after being introduced to him through a friend.
Lamichhane left to play in the Carribbean Premier League on August 22 after leading the team to a 3-2 victory in the five-match Twenty20 series against Kenya. Rohit Kumar Paudel then led the Nepali team in the one-dayers in his absence.
An arrest warrant was issued against Lamichhane on September 8 and the Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) suspended him from the national team the same day after issuance of the arrest warrant.
Nepal Police later also issued a diffusion notice against him through Interpol on September 26.
Section 219 (2) of the National Penal (Code) Act, 2017 states: “Where a man has sexual intercourse with a woman without her consent or with a girl child below eighteen years of age even with her consent, the man shall be considered to commit rape on such woman or girl child.”