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US praises Pakistan's sentencing of Hafiz Saeed

Filed on February 13, 2020
Hafiz Saeed, Pakistan, US

He has been sentenced to prison for five and a half years and a fine of Rs15,000 in each case.

The United States on Wednesday praised Pakistan's jailing of the alleged Mumbai blast mastermind and Jamaat ud Dawa leader Hafiz Saeed, a step long sought by Washington as well as India.

The conviction "of Hafiz Saeed and his associate is an important step forward - both toward holding LeT accountable for its crimes, and for Pakistan in meeting its international commitments to combat terrorist financing," tweeted Alice Wells, the top US diplomat for South Asia.

On Wednesday, a Lahore anti-terrorism court (ATC) convicted Hafiz Saeed in two terror-financing cases.

Saeed has been convicted under the Anti-Terrorism Act Section 11-F(2) - pertaining to membership, support and meetings relating to a proscribed organisation - and 11-N (punishment under Sections 11-H [fund raising] to 11-K [money laundering]), reported Dawn.

ATC judge Arshad Hussain Bhatta announced the verdict.

He has been sentenced to prison for five and a half years and a fine of Rs15,000 in each case. The sentences in both the cases will run concurrently. The court also granted him the benefit of Section 382-B of the Code of Criminal Procedure (reduction of period of sentence of imprisonment).

The court directed the authorities to keep Saeed in custody until further orders.

The cases were filed by the Counter-Terrorism Department's (CTD) Lahore and Gujranwala chapters. The case filed by the CTD's Gujranwala chapter was initially being heard in a Gujranwala ATC but was shifted to Lahore on the directions of the Lahore High Court.

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