Pak court sentences 3 close aides of Hafiz Saeed to over 16 years in jail for terror financing

An anti-terrorism court in Pakistan on Friday sentenced three senior leaders of Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JuD and close aides of mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai terror attack Hafiz Saeed to over 16 years in prison for terror financing.

Hafiz Abdul Rehman Makki and Hafiz Abdus Salam, who were released on bail two weeks ago after the Lahore High Court suspended their sentence in a terror financing case, are among the three leaders who were sentenced by the Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC Lahore in another terror financing case.

“The ATC sentenced Zafar Iqbal and Hafiz Abdus Salam bin Muhammad for 16 and a half years in another terror financing case. A fine of Rs 150,000 on each of them was also imposed,” a court official told after the verdict was pronounced in the presence of the suspects.

“Hafiz Saeed’s brother-in-law Hafiz Abdul Rehman Makki has also been handed down the one-and-a-half-year sentence in the same case. A fine of Rs 20,000 was also imposed on him,” the official said, adding that high-security measures were taken during the court hearing.

ATC-III judge Ijaz Ahmed Buttar gave the verdict. Last week, the suspects were indicted in this case, he said.

“The suspects’ trial was held FIR-91/19 in which the prosecution presented a total 10 witnesses,” he said.

The verdict stated that the three JuD leaders have been found guilty of offence of terrorism financing.

In February, Saeed was sentenced to a jail term of 11 years on terror finance charges by an ATC of Lahore. The court sentenced Saeed and his close aide Zafar Iqbal to five-and-a-half years each in two cases. A total of 11 years sentence will run concurrently. Saeed is serving his term in Lahore’s Kot Lakhpat jail. He was arrested in July last year.

The Counterterrorism Department of Punjab police had registered 23 FIRs against Saeed and his accomplices for terror financing in different cities of the province. Saeed-led JuD is the front organisation for Lashkar-e-Taiba which is responsible for carrying out the 2008 Mumbai attack that killed 166 people, including six Americans.

The US named Saeed as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist, and the US, since 2012, has offered a USD 10-million reward for information that brings Saeed to justice.

He was listed as a terrorist under the UN Security Council Resolution 1267 in December 2008.

Pak court sentences 3 close aides of Hafiz Saeed to over 16 years in jail for terror financing