On Wednesday (January 10), the Nepal court sentenced renowned cricketer Sandeep Lamichhane to eight years in prison in connection with a rape case. The verdict, delivered by Judge Shishir Raj Dhakal, included both imprisonment and financial penalties, as confirmed by court official Ramu Sharma after the hearing. Previously indicted in a rape case by the Kathmandu District Court, Sandeep Lamichhane received the final verdict from Judge Shishir Dhakal in December of the previous year. The Apex Court had instructed a fast-track process on February 23, but the hearing faced delays due to various reasons.

The court had repeatedly paused proceedings when Lamichhane, the accused and former national team captain, traveled to Zimbabwe for the World Cup qualifiers. Despite spending some months in custody, he was later released on bail and permitted to travel abroad. (Virat Kohli To Miss India vs Afghanistan 1st T20I Due To Personal Reasons, Informs Head Coach Rahul Dravid)

On January 12, the Patan High Court overturned the Kathmandu District Court’s decision to place Lamichhane in judicial custody, citing insufficient grounds. Lamichhane secured his release on a Rs 2 million bail the next day. In a separate move, he appealed to the Supreme Court to allow him to join the national team in the UAE for ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup League 2 matches. (WATCH: Specially-Abled Fan In Tears After Sanju Samson Gifts Him RR Cap, Video Goes Viral)

A joint bench of Justices Sapana Pradhan Malla and Kumar Chudal granted Lamichhane permission to travel to the UAE after a hearing on February 27. The case against Lamichhane, filed by the District Government Attorney’s Office (DGAO) in Kathmandu, accused him of raping a minor under Section 219 of the National Penal Code Act, 2017.

The DGAO sought a prison sentence of up to 12 years for Lamichhane under Section 219, which pertains to cases where the victim is between 16 and 18 years old. Additionally, they demanded compensation for the victim. Lamichhane consistently denied the rape allegations during statements to the DGAO and the police. An arrest warrant was issued on September 8, leading to his suspension from the national team by the Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) on the same day.

Read More