Insight Online News
Lahore, Nov 7 (UNI) Six leaders of Hafiz Muhammad Saeed-led Jamatud Dawa (JuD), the organisation for the proscribed Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), responsible for carrying out the 2008 Mumbai attack, in a terror-financing case. have been acquitted by the Lahore High Court in an FIR of terror financing registered by the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD).
According to a report by Dawn, an anti-terrorism court had on April 3, 2021, convicted the appellants in FIR No 18 of 2020 for offences under sections 11-F, 11-H(2), 11-I(2), 11-J(2), 11-N of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997.
Earlier, the trial court had sentenced nine year imprisonment to Prof Malik Zafar Iqbal, Yahya Mujahid, Nasrullah, Samiullah and Umar Bahadur. Hafiz Abdul Rehman Makki was given six-month jail term.
The JuD leaders challenged their conviction before a division bench of the LHC.
Their counsel argued that the prosecution failed to prove the charge against the appellants beyond reasonable doubt, the Pakistan daily reported.
He further said the Al-Anfaal Trust, of which the appellants were members, had no connection with the LeT.
Dawn quoted the counsel as saying there was not a whit of evidence that the appellants engaged in any activity that supported the objectives of the LeT or other such organisation.
He said the JuD leaders had disassociated themselves from the trust in mid 2000s.
Following the appeals, the division bench said, “In his cross-examination Inspector Muhammad Khalid (prosecution witness) conceded that the local police station never received any complaint against the appellants and even during his investigation nobody from the general public brought anything to his notice which could expose their malefactions.”
“The appellants cannot be convicted for the mere reason that LeT or the trust have been proscribed,” they said.
According to Dawn, JuD chief Hafiz Muhammad Saeed and several other leaders have been convicted in dozens of FIRs registered by the CTD on charges of terror financing.
There are at least 41 FIRs registered against the JuD leaders by the CTD in different cities.