Eight charged with killing Xulhaz-Tonoy
Police yesterday pressed charges against eight members of banned militant outfit Ansar Al Islam, including its military wing commander major (sacked) Zia, in the killing of LGBT magazine editor Xulhaz Mannan and his friend in 2016.
Inspector Monirul Islam of the Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime unit of Dhaka Metropolitan Police submitted the charge sheet to the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate’s court in Dhaka.
The accused are Syed Md Ziaul Huq alias Major Zia (sacked army major), 42, Akram Hossain, Sabbirul Haque Chowdhury, 26, Md Zunaid Ahmad alias Maulana Zuned alias Zunaid, 26, Mozammel Husain alias Saimon, 25, Md Arafat Rahman, 24, Md Sheikh Abdullah, 27, and Asadullah, 25.
The murders were carried out on instructions of Maj (sacked) Zia, according to the charge sheet.
Of the accused, Zia, Akram, Sabbirul and Zunaid have been shown absconding while the four others were shown arrested in the case.
All the arrestees are the members of military and intelligence wing of the outfit, according to CTTC officials.
CTTC found direct involvement of 13 people into the double murder. Of them, five were excluded from the charge sheet as their full names and addresses were not found during investigation, the charge sheet mentioned.
Earlier on May 12 this year, the CTTC unit prepared the charge sheet and sent to the home ministry for its approval.
Xulhaz, also a former USAID official, was brutally hacked to death at his Kalabagan home along with his friend Mahbub Rabbi Tonoy by the militants on April 25, 2016.
Seven militants directly took part in the operation. Posing as couriers, five from the outfit’s operational wing entered Xulhaz’s house and executed the murder while two others from its intelligence wing stayed outside.
Five killers, aged between 25 and 28, were seen running away in the footage of a CCTV camera installed about 300 yards from the house.
The double murders drew huge sensation while the international community demanded immediate arrest of the killers.
A case was filed with Kalabagan Police Station in this connection. Initially, Detective Branch (DB) of DMP took over the investigation.
Later in November 2017, DMP’s CTTC unit took over the investigation and arrested four people in connection with the killings.