KARACHI: An anti-terrorism court sentenced on Saturday a man to life imprisonment after convicting him of killing two policemen and looting a cash van.
Jan Wali was charged with two counts of murder and one of robbery that occurred within the limits of Pirabad police station on January 2013.
Around five armed men had looted a cash van of Pakistan Post during which two police guards, identified as Naeem and Rizwan, were killed. The robbers also stole the weapons from the officers. At the time of the incident, the police arrested no suspect but they obtained sketches with the help of eyewitnesses.
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A few months later, the Pirabad police were informed about a suspect detained in an illicit weapons case who, according to the investigators, confessed to being involved in the looting of the cash van.
Prosecution claimed that Wali was one of the robbers. The case was heard for more than the year and the court examined a number of witnesses, including the cashier, the driver of the vehicle, policemen who made the arrest. They all deposed against the suspect and eyewitnesses also picked up him during an identification parade.
During the investigation, the police claimed that the weapon snatched during the incident was seized after a tip-off by Wali and was kept as evidence against him.
The ATC-V judge, Jawaid Alam, while announcing the verdict, observed that all the evidences brought before him proved the involvement of the accused in the crime. The judge awarded him life imprisonment and ordered to pay a fine of Rs100,000 to the deceased officer's legal heirs. He was also given a 10-year jail term for the robbery.
During the hearing, Wali stood handcuffed, quite in the last benches' lane of the courtroom and only spoke to say 'shukriya' to the judge. Wali claims that he never committed the crime and was falsely implicated in the case for raising his voice against drug peddlers in the area he lived in.
"My house was burnt. My brother [Rozi Khan] and I were beaten, locked up and later implicated in cases. We just resisted the operations of a drug den in our area," he told The Express Tribune. "The drug business is still continuing under the patronage of police and even the children of the area have become addicts." Wali claimed that he worked as a labourer and has two daughters.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 13th, 2016.
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