The metropolitan magistrate court said on Tuesday that the alleged offence is detrimental to the health of our society even as it refused bail to actor Shilpa Shetty’s husband Raj Kundra and his IT support provider Ryan Thorpe, both of whom were arrested by property cell of the Mumbai crime branch in connection with a pornography film racket.
The two were arrested on July 19 and the magistrate court had remanded both to judicial custody on July 28 after which Kundra’s lawyers moved a bail plea for the duo.
In a detailed order, additional chief metropolitan magistrate S B Bhajipale said one of the consideration for refusing or granting the bail is the nature and gravity of offence.“The effect of alleged offence is having nexus with public at large,” said the magistrate court, adding that, “The alleged offence is also detrimental to the health of our society. In such circumstance, societal interest in the prosecution of a crime which has a wider social dimension cannot be overlooked.”
The court also noted that the two deleted huge data which could have been used as incriminating material against them. “In such circumstances, there is every possibility of tampering with the evidence if the accused are released on bail,” it said.
The property cell has claimed that Kundra set up a company, Armsprime Media Pvt Ltd., which developed a mobile phone application, “Hotshots”, and sold it to London-based Kenrin Pvt Ltd, owned by his brother-in-law. Police claimed that Kundra used the app to upload pornographic videos shot in and around Mumbai for paid viewership of the app.
The property cell further claimed that Kundra was the one who controlled the operation of the app and earned over ₹1.17 crore between August and December last year by means of subscription fee collected from app users.
Police claimed to have found 51 obscene videos at Kundra’s office in Andheri west — 35 videos had “Hotspots” logo and 16 with logo of “BollyFame,” an app that the 45-year-old businessman got developed after Apple and Google removed “Hotshots” from their respective app stores and it was also removed from YouTube.