The High Court (HC) on Monday released full text of Zia Orphanage Trust graft case appeal verdict and posted it on its website. A High Court division bench comprising Justice M Enayetur Rahim and Justice Md Mostafizur Rahman passed the order on October 30, 2018, and enhanced BNP Chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia’s five-year jail term to 10 years in the case.
The High Court came up with the order allowing a revision plea filed by Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) against a lower court judgment that awarded the BNP chief a lenient sentence of five-year imprisonment for embezzling money meant to be spend for orphans, considering her age and social status.
Dhaka special judge court-5 on February 8 sentenced the BNP leader to five-year imprisonment and other five accused including her “fugitive” elder son and BNP’s senior vice chairman Tarique Rahman, to a 10-year imprisonment each.
The court also fined them Taka 2.10 crore. “All of the accused played an identical role in the crime. But her (Khaleda’s) jail term was brought down a bit considering her age and social status,” the court said in its judgment.
The other convicts are former lawmaker Kazi Salimul Haque Kamal, businessmen Sharfuddin Ahmed, Dr Kamal Uddin Siddiqui and her nephew Mominur Rahman.
After the judgement, three convicts– Khaleda, Kazi Salimul Haque Kamal and Sarfuddin Ahmed– who are now behind the bars, filed appeals against theirconviction. The ACC too filed a revision plea to enhance Khaleda’s sentence.
Later, the HC passed the order rejecting pleas of the three convicts.