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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Lahore ATC jails Hafiz Saeed in terror-financing cases

A Lahore anti terrorist court Judge Arshad Hussain Bhatta sentenced Jamatud Dawa leader Hafiz Saeed to five and a half years' prison with a fine of Rs 150,000 in each case for two terror financing case on Wednesday.

The Section 11-F(2) pertaining to membership, support, and meetings relating to a proscribed organization was implied to JuD leader and Malik Zafar Iqbal-the secretary of Al-Anfaal Trust. Both were sentenced to jail for five and a half years.

The anti-terrorism court also bestowed the benefit of 382-B of the Code of Criminal Procedure to both convicted which reads reduction of period of sentence of imprisonment.

Proceedings of the Lahore Anti-terrorism court

The JuD leader was arrested by the CTD in July.2019 in lieu of 23 FIRs registered against him and his aides at different CTD police stations in Punjab.

According to counter-terrorism department (CTD), JuD was financing terrorism through proscribed trusts including Al-Anfaal Trust, Dawatul Irshad Trust, Muaz Bin Jabal Trust.

Read more: Hafiz Saeed arrested on terror finance charges

On July 3, top 13 leaders of the banned JuD, including Hafiz Saeed were booked in nearly two dozen cases for terror financing and money laundering under the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997. The cases alleged that JuD was using front companies to collect donations that were used to build assets that were in turn used for terror financing.

Pakistan’s progress to get off FATF grey list

Pakistan has vocally reaffirmed its commitment to implemet the NAP to get itself out of grey list. However, in the last meeting held in October 2019 in Paris.

In his Tweeter, Minister for Investment portfolio said that ”Pak remains committed to the earliest completion of its FATF Action Plan. FATF Plenary is a technical process. Irrespective of and without speculating on any final decision at the plenary, we look forward to acknowledgment of significant progress that Pak Authorities have made”.

The last FATF meeting in October reviewed the measures that Islamabad has already taken to control money laundering and terror financing. However, the meeting observed that Islamabad will have to take further steps in the next four months until February, 2020.

Read more: FATF encourages Pakistan to implement action plan by October, 2019

The next meeting of the watchdog will be held later in February 2020 in which the Asian Pacific Group will decide the grey list status for Pakistan.