Once high-flying tech mogul, Gurbaksh Chahal, was led away in handcuffs on a domestic violence related probation violation Friday - despite tearful pleas for leniency.
“I’m begging you to have mercy on me, your honor, please,” the 35-year-old San Francisco social media marketer and multi-millionaire said. Chahal even teared up at times while addressing Superior Court Judge Tracie Brown in San Francisco. “The truth is, I’m not a bad person.”
Chahal’s lawyer, famed O.J. Simpson defense attorney Robert Shapiro, wanted the judge to consider Chahal’s charitable efforts and community work on behalf of domestic violence victims since the case started. Shapiro also continued to insist his client is innocent of the probation violation allegation.
The judge noted that the evidence showed otherwise, and she was not swayed to reduce her one-year term, saying she had already given Chahal credit for his community service. When she originally sentencing him back in 2016. That triggered appeals to the state Supreme Court, which declined to hear his case.
He is expected to serve six months in jail, with credit for good behavior.
Referring to Chahal’s tearful statement, the judge said: “I don’t think it demonstrates a great deal of regard for the victims in this case.”
Despite last ditch legal motions seeking more delay, Chahal was led away in handcuffs.
The case began after video evidence against Chahal — who was already serving probation for misdemeanor domestic violence — was tossed out because it was illegally seized. He was free on probation in that case when prosecutors lodged new domestic violations that they said merited revoking the original probation.
Chahal appealed all the way up to the state Supreme Court, which upheld his sentence in mid-August.
Beverly Upton, executive director of the Domestic Violence Consortium, said after court that the sentencing showed that can be justice even for domestic violence defendants who have the money to fight cases for years.
“He’s been given every opportunity for a wake-up call,” Upton said. “He still hasn’t gotten it. So I think we’re a safer city today.”