Appeal hearings in Zia orphanage trust graft case Monday

Appeal hearings in Zia orphanage trust graft case Monday

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Dhaka, July 8 – The High Court Sunday deferred till July 9 (today) the hearing on four appeals in connection with Zia Orphanage Trust corruption case in which BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment.
Following a time prayer made by BNP chief, the HC bench comprising Justice M Enayetur Rahim and Justice Md Mostafizur Rahman fixed 2:00 pm on July 9 for hearing on the appeals.
In her petition, the BNP chief said that she had earlier submitted a petition to the Supreme Court seeking review of its May 16 order that asked the HC to hear and dispose of her appeal in Zia Orphanage Trust corruption case by July 31.
The review petition is pending with the Supreme Court. Hence, the appeals hearing on the Zia Orphanage case should be adjourned till disposal of the review petition by the Supreme Court, Khaleda said in the adjournment application.
Attorney general Mahbubey Alam stood for the state, lawyer Khurshid Alam Khan for the Anti-Corruption Commission and AJ Mohammad Ali for Khaleda Zia.
Earlier on June 27, the same bench of the HC fixed July 3 for starting hearing on the appeal filed by BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia against the trial court verdict that sentenced her to five-year imprisonment in Zia Orphanage Trust graft case.
The HC bench fixed the date following a prayer made by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) for a quick hearing on the appeal.
Earlier on May 16, a four-member bench of the Appellate Division, led by Chief Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain upheld the High Court order that had granted bail to convicted BNP chief Khaleda Zia in Zia Orphanage Trust graft case.
The apex court also directed the High Court bench led by Justice Enayetur Rahim to hear and dispose of the appeal of the BNP chief by July 31.
On February 8, the Special Judge’s Court-5 of Dhaka convicted and sentenced Khaleda to five years’ imprisonment guilty in the corruption case.
The court also sentenced Khaleda’s eldest son and BNP Senior Vice Chairman Tarique Rahman and four others to 10 years’ rigorous imprisonment and fined Tk 2.10 crores each.
Khaleda Zia on February 20 filed an appeal with the HC challenging the trial court verdict on her.
In the appeal, Khaleda prayed to the HC to acquit her of the corruption charge and to scrap the lower court verdict, stay her conviction and suspend the five-year prison sentence.
The BNP chief Khaleda Zia is now in jail since February 8 after the Special Judge’s Court-5 of Dhaka sentenced her to five years’ rigorous imprisonment in connection with the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case.
On March 13, the High Court granted her bail for four months in the case and on May 16, the Appellate Division of the SC had also upheld the HC order that had granted bail to Khaleda in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case.
However, the BNP chief was not freed from jail, as she was shown arrested in some other cases filed with different police stations in Comilla, Dhaka, Narail and Panchagarh, including the three in which she has already sought bail. The BNP chairperson is currently facing a total of 36 cases. – Staff Reporter

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