An anti-terrorism court in Lahore on Friday sentenced Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed to a total of 31 years in prison and imposed a fine of Rs340,000 in two more cases while ordering confiscation of all his property.
The Counter-Terrorism Department Lahore had accused Saeed of raising funds to build a mosque and seminary. The court has also ordered to take the buildings in custody.
Judge Ijaz Ahmed Buttar in his verdict handed down a jail term of 16-and-a-half years as well as 15-and a-half years on two separate charges.
Saeed has been arrested since 2019 and so far he has been convicted in seven cases. The statements of witnesses were cross-examined by Naseeruddin Nayyar and Mohammad Imran Fazal Gul, advocates of Saeed and other JuD leaders. Earlier in December 2020, an anti-terrorism court had sentenced Saeed to 15 years and six months imprisonment.
Besides sentencing Saeed, ATC Judge Ijaz Ahmed Buttar had also handed down punishments to Hafiz Abdul Salam, Zafar Iqbal, Muhammad Ashraf and Yahya Mujahid to 15 years and six-month imprisonment, whereas a six-month imprisonment was handed down to Hafiz Abdul Rehman Makki.
According to the details released by the proscribed outfit, those convicted would also have to pay a fine of Rs200,000 each. On November 19 the same year, an ATC convicted Saeed and three others in two separate terror-financing cases.
A total of 41 cases have been registered in other cities against him, most of which have been decided.
On July 3 2019, 13 top leaders of the banned JuD, including its chief Saeed and deputy Abdul Rehman Makki, were booked in nearly two dozen cases of terror financing and money laundering under the ATA. Saeed was later arrested by the CTD on July 17 while he was travelling between Gujranwala and Lahore.
The CTD, in a major crackdown against terror financing in 2019, had registered 23 cases against Saeed and 12 aides for using five trusts to “funnel funds to terror suspects”.
The CTD had said it had registered cases under the ATA in Lahore, Gujranwala and Multan against the leadership of banned outfits JuD, Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Falah-e-Insaniyat Foundation (FIF). Saeed, who is in his 70s, says he is not linked to any group, although he heads the JuD, which is alleged to be the charitable arm of the LeT.