Pakistan’s Supreme Court has criticised the prosecution for its failure to prove the guilt of British-born al-Qaeda terrorist Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh, the main accused in the sensational kidnapping and homicide of US journalist Daniel Pearl in 2002, in accordance to a media report.
The apex court docket issued its detailed 43-page judgment on Friday, which has been authored by Justice Sardar Tariq Masood – who was half of the three-member bench. Dawn newspaper reported that the judges held that the proof furnished through the trial was full of factual and authorized defects.
The judgement explains the the explanation why the Supreme Court had on January 28 acquitted, by a majority of two to one, Omar Sheikh and others and ordered the discharge of the principal suspect in addition to Fahad Nasim Ahmed, Syed Salman Saqib and Shaikh Mohammd Adil from the jail forthwith, if not required to be detained in reference to every other case.
Pearl, 38, was the South Asia bureau chief of The Wall Street Journal.
His homicide befell three years after Sheikh, together with Jaish-e-Mohammad chief (JeM) Masood Azhar and Mushtaq Ahmed Zargar, was launched by India in 1999 and given secure passage to Afghanistan in trade for the practically 150 passengers of hijacked Indian Airlines Flight 814.
The Sindh High Court (SHC) on April 2, 2020 commuted the dying sentence of Sheikh convicted of kidnapping and murdering US journalist Pearl in 2002 to seven years and acquitted three others who had been serving life phrases in the case – nearly twenty years after they had been discovered responsible and jailed.
The SC on January 28 ordered authorities to launch the accused whereas issuing a break up order. The third member of the bench Justice Yahya Afridi didn’t agree with the bulk view and issued a dissenting word.
Justice Yahya Afridi, a member of the bench, had dissented from the bulk opinion.
The judgment mentioned the bulk of judges had been entertaining no quantity of doubt that prosecution had failed to deliver residence guilt of the accused/respondents and appellant because the proof furnished through the trial is full of factual and authorized defects.
”In this case, relating to each piece of proof, the doubts are rising from the mouth of the witnesses, and it’s settled since centuries that the profit of doubt routinely goes in favour of an accused,” the decision mentioned.
Even if a single circumstance created affordable doubt in a prudent thoughts relating to the guilt of an accused then the accused was entitled to such profit, not as a matter of grace and concession however of proper, and such profit should be prolonged to the accused individuals by the courts with none reservation, the decision mentioned.
Thus the SHC had rightly prolonged the profit of the doubt to Fahad Nasim Ahmed, Syed Salman Saqib and Sheikh Mohammad Adil and acquitted them of all the fees and had additionally rightly prolonged the profit of the doubt to Omar Sheikh relating to all different fees, the judgement mentioned.
But the SHC wrongly convicted him underneath Section 362 of the PPC when the proof of Nasir Abbas was full of doubts and no reliance might be positioned on such a uncertain assertion.
So the conviction of Sheikh was not justified, the judgement mentioned, including that although the counsel for the dad and mom of Pearl argued that it was a high-profile case, even in such instances the profit of the doubt couldn’t be prolonged to the prosecution.
Meanwhile, Justice Afridi in his 52-page dissenting word noticed that in instances of conspiracy, direct proof was seldom out there and a conspiracy might be established by circumstantial proof. Voicing outrage over the acquittal of Sheikh and his aides, the White House had requested Pakistan to expeditiously overview its authorized choices, together with permitting the US to prosecute them to safe justice for Pearl’s household.
Amid mounting stress from the US and the UN, the federal authorities filed an software earlier than the apex court docket to be allowed to be part of as a celebration in the proceedings and additional search overview and recall of the court docket’s January 28 judgement.
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