Pakistan’S Supreme Court Releases President Convicted Of Murdering Journalist Daniel Pearl

2021-01-28   |   by CusiGO

Pakistan’s Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the release of Ahmed Omar said Sheikh, convicted of kidnapping and murdering American journalist Daniel Pearl in January 2002, according to Reuters law. Last year, another court commuted the death penalty imposed in the case, which caused a great stir in the international community about the possibility of his release and prompted a review of the appeal trial.

“The court acquitted all the defendants by a 2-1 majority and ordered their release,” prosecutor Salman talibudin explained.

It also released three other Pakistanis who were sentenced to life imprisonment for their involvement in the kidnapping and murder of pearl. In addition, the high court rejected the reporter’s family’s appeal against Sheikh’s acquittal. “It’s a mockery of justice,” his family said through his lawyer.

Sheikh, who was sentenced to death at the end of 2002, appealed last year and successfully reduced his sentence to seven years’ imprisonment, which means that he was released after serving his sentence in prison. His accomplices Fahad Nassim, Salman sajib and Sheikh adir were also released, and the prosecutor’s office appealed against them for life imprisonment and death penalty.

The Sindh High Court accepted the defence counsel’s argument that the prosecution failed to prove beyond doubt its client’s involvement. He also admitted that most of the witnesses against him were the police, who he considered unreliable. The defense assured that Nassim and Adil’s statements before the judge were not voluntary.

Pearl, 38, a reporter for the Wall Street Journal, was kidnapped in Karachi, Pakistan’s Sindh capital, while investigating Islamic extremists after the September 11 attacks in the United States. Just a month later, a video from the US consulate in the city showed how he had his throat cut.

Born in the UK, Sheikh studied at the London School of economics and was arrested in India for his involvement in the kidnapping of Western tourists in 1994. However, after an Indian plane was hijacked in 1999, he was one of the three released hostages and flew to Afghanistan, where the Taliban regime mediated.