Prosecution seeks life term for Khaleda
The prosecution yesterday sought life imprisonment for BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia and five other accused in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case.
Public Prosecutor Mosharraf Hossain Kajol of the Anti-Corruption Commission made the appeal after placing his closing argument in the case.
Under the law, the highest punishment for the offence is life imprisonment.
During yesterday's argument, Kajol said the charges brought against Khaleda, her elder son Tarique Rahman, a fugitive, and four others were proven. He appealed to the court to give them the highest punishment, said Ziauddin Zia, one of Khaleda's lawyers.
The four other accused are former BNP lawmaker Saleemul Haq Kamal, businessman Sharfuddin Ahmed, late president Ziaur Rahman's nephew Mominur Rahman and former principal secretary Kamal Uddin Siddiqui.
Of them, Sharfuddin and Saleemul are in jail while Mominur and Kamal are on the run.
During the argument, Kajol cited different points from the statements of 32 prosecution witnesses, including complainant and investigation officer of the case. He also mentioned important points from the first information report and the charge sheet of the case which helped prove the charges.
On completion of the argument, Judge Md Akhtaruzzaman of the Special Judge Court-5 set up at a makeshift court in Bakshi Bazar fixed today for placing the defence arguments.
The court also extended bail term of Khaleda till today after her lawyers submitted two separate petitions.
Earlier in the day, Khaleda appeared before the same court and sought time for placing her self-defence statement in the Zia Charitable Trust graft case.
In July 2008, the ACC filed the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case with Ramna Police Station accusing Khaleda, her son Tarique and four others of misappropriating over Tk 2.10 crore that had come as grants for orphans from a foreign bank.
Three years later, the anti-graft body lodged the Zia Charitable Trust graft case with Tejgaon Police Station, accusing four people, including Khaleda, of abusing power to raise funds for the trust from unknown sources.