An anti-terrorism court in Pakistan has sentenced Mumbai attack mastermind and Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed to 5 years in jail in terror financing cases.
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The final verdict was announced by ATC judge Arshad Hussain Bhatta. Saeed was also present in the courtroom while the judge read out the sentence. Saeed is nominated in multiple cases pertaining to money laundering, terror financing and land grabbing. The court has directed authorities to keep the terrorist under custody until further orders.
Saeed, who in November 2018 was set free from a 300 day long house arrest, has been repeatedly accused by the US and India of masterminding the 2008 attacks on the Indian financial capital that killed 166 people.
Hafiz Saeed and another of his close aides have been sentenced in two cases of terrorism financing.
They were convicted under the Anti-Terrorism Act Section 11-F(2) pertaining to membership, support and meetings relating to a proscribed organisation and 11-N (punishment under Sections 11-H to 11-K).
The JuD leader was found guilty of “being part of a banned terrorist outfit” and for “having illegal property”, his lawyer Imran Gill told AFP.
Counter Terrorism Department’s (CTD) Lahore & Gujranwala chapters filed the terror financing cases . The case filed by CTD’s Gujranwala chapter was initially being heard in a Gujranwala ATC but was shifted to Lahore on the directions of the Lahore High Court.
As per, Counter Terrorism Department’s JuD was financing terrorism from the massive funds collected through non-profit organisations and trusts including Al-Anfaal Trust, Dawatul Irshad Trust, Muaz Bin Jabal Trust, etc. These non-profit organisations were banned in April last year as the CTD, during detailed investigations, found that they had links with the JuD and its top leadership.
This terrorist is sentenced with 5 years jail and a fine of Rs15,000 in each case. The court also granted him the benefit of Section 382-B of the Code of Criminal Procedure (reduction of period of sentence of imprisonment). Malik Zafar Iqbal, the secretary of Al-Anfaal Trust, has also been convicted in the same cases and has been awarded similar punishment.