SC begins hearing SQ Chowdhury’s war crimes appeal

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The Supreme Court has begun hearing on war criminal Salauddin Quader Chowdhury’s appeal against the death sentence given to him by a special tribunal.

The four-member Appellate Division bench, led by Chief Justice Surendra Kumar Sinha, started hearing the appeal of the BNP Standing Committee member yesterday.

The hearing started two hours after the same bench had upheld the death penalty of Jamaat-e-Islami leader Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mujaheed for his war crimes.

SQ Chowdhury’s lawyer SM Shahjahan told the Dhaka Tribune: “The apex court rejected our time petition and commenced the hearing. We sought more time to make preparations for the hearing.”

Khandaker Mahbub Hossain and SM Shahjahan represented Salauddin while the state was represented by Attorney General Mahbubey Alam and Deputy Attorney General Ekramul Haque.

The defence counsels read out the charges brought by the prosecution during the first day of hearing, said Shahjahan.

The hearing, that started around 10:45am and ended at 1:15pm with a break of around half an hour, will resume today.

On October 29, 2013, Salauddin filed the appeal against the death penalty awarded to him by the International Crimes Tribunal for the crimes against humanity he had committed during the 1971 Liberation War.

Advocate Zainul Abedin filed the appeal with the Supreme Court on behalf of Salauddin. The first war crimes tribunal handed down capital punishment to the BNP leader, who served as a lawmaker for six consecutive terms.

Salauddin was given the death penalty on four out of nine proven charges for committing crimes against humanity and genocide in Chittagong with an aim to annihilate the Hindu community.

Source: Dhaka Tribune

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