On April 21, 2021, the Supreme Court of Nepal has ruled that the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) cannot conduct a sting operation to arrest a bribe-taker.
In the case of 074-WC-0020, the Constitutional Bench of the Supreme court declared null and void to the provisions of Rule 30 of the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority Rules, 2059 BS.
Hearing the writ petition, the Supreme Court has quashed and invalidated the said provision of the rules in accordance with Article 133 (1) of the Constitution of Nepal with effect from the date of the court’s order.
Supreme Court also ruled that the said provision of the rules is not in line with the provisions of Article 20 (9) of the Constitution of Nepal and the spirit and letter of Article 3 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 2059 BS.
A constitutional bench of the Supreme Court comprising Chief Justice Cholendra Shamsher Jabara, Justices Deepak Kumar Karki, Justice Mira Khadka, Justice Harikrishna Karki, and Justice Ishwar Prasad Khatiwada issued a writ petition to stop the sting operation.
The CIAA had been conducting sting operations on the basis of the provisions of Rule 30 of the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority Rules, 2059 BS.
Similarly, the bench said, “The sting operation did not seem reasonable and logical even in terms of the valid principles of criminal justice, the due process of law, and the judicial recognition of evidence gathering.” The provision was seen as encouraging the investigating officer to act arbitrarily.
The bench observed that the provision on sting operation is not conducive to the concept of delegated legislation and that the provision encourages the investigating officer to act arbitrarily.
Due to this Constitutional bench’s order, the 4 hundred cases filed by the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) on the basis of sting operation alone will be dismissed.
It also ordered that all the cases already heard or pending in the judicial process be dismissed.
However, advocate Bishnu Prasad Ghimire had filed a writ petition against the CIAA’s sting operation.
The Bench issued a summary of the judgement, it will be prepared full judgement later.
Full text of judgement