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LeT Leader Lakhvi Sentenced To 5 Years In Prison Over Terror Financing

LAHORE: An anti-terrorism court on Friday sentenced Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, a leader of the proscribed Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), to 5 years in prison with a fine of Rs300,000 in a terrorism financing case.

ATC-III Judge Ejaz Ahmad Buttar pronounced the verdict and awarded the fine to Lakhvi for running a medical dispensary to collect and disburse funds for militant activities.

During the trial, Naseeruddin Khan Nayyar and Muhammad Imran Fazal Gul were cross-examined.

In its written order issued on Friday, the ATC found Lakhvi guilty under three sections of the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA), 1997, for running a dispensary in Kot Lakhpat to raise funds for financing terrorism. Lakhvi was sentenced to five year prison terms under each section, to be served concurrently, with an additional fine of Rs300,000. The court also handed over possession of the said dispensary to the state.

Lakhvi will now be sent to jail to serve out his sentence.

As leader of the banned militant group, LeT, Lakhvi is blamed by the United States and India for the 2008 Mumbai attacks. He was first arrested in 2008 but was later released on bail.

India has long called on Pakistan to bring Lakhvi to trial, but Islamabad says Delhi has not provided concrete evidence to try the LeT leader.

A UN Security Council sanctions committee says Lakhvi is LeT’s chief of operations and accuses him of being involved in militant activity in a number of other regions and countries, including Chechnya, Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Earlier this month, the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) of Punjab Police arrested Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi on terrorism financing charge.

The arrest was made in relation to terrorism financing, spokesman for CTD clarified, and not for a “specific militant attack”.

“Proscribed organisation LeT (Lashkar-e-Taiba) leader Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi (has been) arrested on charges of terrorism financing,” he said. TLTP

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Naya Daur