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SC rejects plea for police officers' bail suspension in Benazir murder case

SC rejects plea for police officers' bail suspension in Benazir murder case
October 5, 2018
ISLAMABAD (92 News) – The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a petition seeking suspension of bails granted to police officers Saud Aziz and Khurram Shahzad in late Benazir Bhutto murder case. A two-member bench headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa heard the petitions against the high court's verdict to grant bails to former City Police Officer (CPO) Saud Aziz and former SP Khurram Shahzad in the Benzir murder case. Pakistan Peoples’ Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and other party leaders appeared before the court for hearing. After hearing the arguments, the apex court rejected the petition and upheld the bails granted to the two police officers. During the hearing, Justice Khosa remarked, “BB's martyrdom was also a trauma for me. When they were washing the crime scene, I was shocked and also asked my friends what they were doing as doubts can never replace evidence.” Justice Khosa said that BBC has done the investigation of the BB murder case better than the police investigations. “We also have to consider the angle that whether innocent people are being trapped in the case,” Justice Asif Khosa remarked. He also said that the court review all angles during the time of decision. “If evidence cannot be presented then the high court can grant a bail. This is not true saying that the high court has no constitutional right for granting bail. The bail rejection law is clearly mentioned,” he said. Justice Khosa questioned that how can a mistake in the provision of security become criminal offence. The justice also asked that where are proof of former president Musharraf’s involvement in the murder case. To this the head of bench said that the politics is different from the law, the court always follow the evidence. Justice Khosa remarked, “For a decision you need evidence.” After completing arguments, however, the court dismissed the petition seeking to reject the bail of police officials. On August 31, 2017, an anti-terrorism court (ATC) in Rawalpindi announced the verdict in the Benazir Bhutto murder case and announced 17-year imprisonment for two police officials, City Police Officer (CPO) Saud Aziz and Khurram Shahzad. However, the high court had later granted them bail. Benazir Bhutto, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairperson and two-time former prime minister, was assassinated in a gun and bomb attack at an election campaign rally in Rawalpindi’s Liaquat Bagh on December 27, 2007. An FIR over the incident was registered on behalf of the state following which the murder trial of five suspects began in February of 2008. However, once PPP won the 2008 elections, the investigation was handed over to the FIA.  
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