Indian man assaults sleeping-woman on flight, as wife sat next

Shalini Ojha

Indian man assaults sleeping-woman on flight, as wife sat next

18 Aug 2018: Indian man assaults sleeping-woman on flight, as wife sat next

A 35-year-old Indian IT-manager was convicted for assaulting a sleeping woman on a Detroit bound flight from Las Vegas, while his wife sat next to him.

US District Judge Terrence Berg on Friday said the accused, identified as Prabhu Ramamoorthy, will be sentenced on December 12.

He faces life in prison, and if released, he may be deported to India.

Here's all about the case.

The assault: Ramamoorthy inserted his fingers inside victim's pants as she slept

The assault happened in January on a Spirit Airlines flight. The 22-year-old victim was sitting on the window seat, Ramamoorthy took the middle seat, and his wife sat on the aisle seat.

The victim told federal agents that she had dozed off and woke up to discover Ramamoorthy's fingers inside her pants, which he was rigorously moving.

She added her shirt was unbuttoned too.

The probe: After denying charges initially, Ramamoorthy confesses cupping woman's breasts

The victim informed flight attendants about the assault immediately, and at Detroit Metro Airport, he was taken into custody.

Initially, Ramamoorthy, who was on a temporary visa to the States, denied the allegations saying he was sleeping.

On further probe, he confessed to cupping the woman's breasts, and unhooking her bra 'while playing with it'. He also accepted unzipping her pants.

The case: Jury finds Ramamoorthy guilty after five-day trial

The trial lasted just five days, and the jury arrived at a decision about Ramamoorthy in under four hours.

"We will not tolerate the behavior of anyone who takes advantage of victims who are in a vulnerable position, and we are glad the jury agreed," Attorney Matthew Schneider said.

Schneider also appreciated the woman's courage to speak up.