Thirty-four-year-old fashion designer Anand Jon, once among the most prominent Indians on the New York fashion and social scenes, was convicted of rape and other crimes today. From The Los Angeles Times:
"This jury today has sent a message that our communities will not tolerate serial rapists and child molesters like Anand Jon," deputy Dist. Atty. Frances Young said in a statement she read after the hearing. "They will be held accountable and the victims will get justice."
Prosecutors said Jon, 34, faces a sentence of life in prison when he is sentenced Jan. 13. He will be eligible for parole after 67 years.
More from Michel Potts, who's been covering the trial for India-West:
Speaking on behalf of Jon’s defense team of four lawyers during the press conference, Leonard Levin declared that they were “obviously disappointed” with the jury’s verdicts but vowed to file an appeal on Jon’s behalf.
“This case is not over by a long shot,” he said.
Levin earlier told India-West that the appeal will be based on the contention that “there were numerous pre-trial rulings, evidentiary rulings and so forth that are too numerous to go into at this time. It has to do with the evidence that was admitted and the evidence that was kept out.”
Asked how Jon is holding up after having been found guilty on so many counts, “he intends to continue fighting,” Donald Marks told India-West. “He realizes that on many of these counts, the testimony at best was not credible, inconsistent, and I think there was substantial impeachment of all the witnesses…We believe we have a very potent new trial motion, and we look forward to that as well as the appeal.”
When the first guilty verdict was pronounced on the very first charge read, the life went out of Jon’s supporters and attorneys, as though each knew what was coming – a near shutout of convictions involving a tight string of felonies and misdemeanors ranging from lewd acts upon a child to forcible rape. By the end of the clerk’s reading, some 15 minutes later, the damage to Jon’s life was evident: 16 guilty verdicts, four acquittals and three counts on which the jury had deadlocked. Jon now faces life in prison with parole possible only after 67 years, according to Young, who, in a later press conference, branded Jon as “a 34-year-old pedophile masquerading as a fashion designer.”