A Delhi court framed charges against underworld don Abu Salem , on Tuesday, for allegedly making extortion calls to three Delhi-based businessmen in 1998. Finding prima-facie evidence against Salem, Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Kiran Bansal ordered framing of charges under section 384 (extortion) and 120B (criminal conspiracy).
Salem did not plead guilty to the charges and preferred to contest the case. The court then fixed the matter for recording of evidence of prosecution witnesses on January 11 next year. Earlier, Salem had opposed framing of charges on the ground that the Indian government did not mention his impending prosecution under harsher penal provision while seeking his extradition from Portugal.
Salem, along with Romesh Sharma, alleged frontman of underworld don Dawood Ibrahim, were booked for allegedly making threat calls to businessmen for money. The court had said the trial against Romesh and Salem be segregated. An FIR was lodged at Hauz Khas police station in 1998 under 384 (extortion) and 120B (conspiracy) of IPC against him.
Salem was extradited from Portugal in 2005 to face trial in various cases including the 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts.