Gravesend man Arjun Sehgal jailed for sex attack on woman
A man who pushed a woman to the ground and molested her as she walked along a road to visit her grandfather has been jailed.
Arjun Sehgal, of Lamorna Avenue, Gravesend, had denied sexual assault - but pleaded guilty on the third day of his trial at Maidstone Crown Court.
Before sentencing, Judge Andrew Goymer described it as "an outrageous and brazen assault".
The case was heard at Maidstone Crown Court
Sehgal has now appeared at Southwark Crown Court to be sentenced to 18 months' imprisonment. He was also placed on the sex offenders' register for 10 years.
In July this year, Maidstone Crown Court heard how a woman had travelled by train from London to Gravesend in July 2012.
She was walking along Parrock Street in the early evening on a summer's day when she saw 21-year-old Sehgal emerge from the back of a parked van.
Prosecutor Catherine Farrelly said: "She thought she could smell a strong odour similar to cannabis from the back of the van."
The woman heard footsteps behind her and took out her mobile phone to make it appear she was talking to somebody.
But Sehgal tried to engage her in conversation, asking her name. The woman told him she did not speak to strangers and Sehgal replied: "Don’t be like that."
He then put his arm around her, pushed her to the ground, put his hand up her skirt and touched her leg. She fought back, and screamed for help.
A resident saw what was happening and went to the woman's aid. Sehgal claimed the woman was his girlfriend, but she made it clear she was not.
Two brothers had also been watching and arrived on the scene to help. Sehgal walked off but was followed to Echo Square, where he was arrested.
He said he had been to the Skunkworks shop in Gravesend, which sells "legal highs2, and bought a packet of a synthetic cannabinoid called Annihilation, which he and a friend smoked. Sehgal said he began to feel strange and could remember nothing until he was in the back of the police car. He claimed he had only smoked cannabis once before.
But Miss Farrelly said samples taken from him showed he had taken cannabis over at least three months before the incident.
DC Simon Williams, of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, said: "Despite pleading guilty during the trial, Sehgal showed no remorse for his actions.
"Hopefully a spell behind bars will give him ample opportunity to think about the consequences of not only his actions that day, but also in using a legal high and then trying to use it as a defence to claim he could not remember the incident.
"I hope the sentence will go some way to allowing the victim, who has displayed tremendous strength and courage over the last year, to move on with her life."
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