Published: Thu, May 17, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Bangladesh SC grants bail to former PM Khaleda Zia in corruption case

Bangladesh SC grants bail to former PM Khaleda Zia in corruption case

The apex court directed the High Court to hear her petition and positively dispose of it by the end of July.

On Wednesday, the Supreme Court also ordered authorities to make a final decision by July 31 involving a separate appeal by Zia seeking her release from jail.

But on March 19, the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court stayed till May 8 the High Court order, granting two leave to appeal petitions filed by the ACC and the state against the bail.

The AG said he could not complete his arguments on May 9 as the court witnessed a commotion by some lawyers on that day.

Attorney General Mahbubey Alam said the state will take preparation as soon as possible for the High Court hearing.

The Supreme Court will deliver its verdict today on the appeals against the High Court order that granted bail to BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia in the Zia Orphanage Trust corruption case.

Dhaka Special Judge Court-5 on February 8 convicted Khaleda Zia and five others in Zia Orphanage Trust graft case. Later, the anti-corruption commission and the government challenged the high court order, taking their appeals to the appellate division.

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Khaleda Zia's lawyer Joynal Abedin appeared optimist and said that they expect to secure bail in other cases as well.

The other accused are former lawmaker Kazi Salimul Haque Kamal, businessman Sharfuddin Ahmed, Dr Kamal Uddin Siddiqui, and Khaleda's nephew Mominur Rahman.

Arguing on behalf of Zia, her lawyer had pleaded for the former premiers bail on the ground of her ill health and old age.

The BNP chief has been in the old jailhouse on Nazimuddin Road after she was convicted of embezzling funds meant for orphans.

The court in February had also sentenced Zias elder son Tarique Rahman, now in the United Kingdom, and four others to 10 years rigorous imprisonment each, and fined them a total of 2.10 crore taka, saying that all the convicts have to pay the fine in equal amounts.

The high court had on March 12 granted an interim bail to Zia.

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