Additional district & sessions (AD&S) Judge adjourned the hearing of double murder trial against Raymond Davis till March 16 on Tuesday, while the accused remained adamant not to sign a copy of the charge-sheet, insisting he has diplomatic immunity and the court could not try him.
AD&S Judge Yousif Aujla held the proceedings in Kot Lakhpat jail amid tight security as heavy contingents of law enforcement agencies cordoned off the jail premises.
The judge adjourned the court for framing charges against Davis, after handing over the complete case record to the counsels of the accused.
The court wanted to frame charges against Davis at the last hearing, but was informed by the accused’s counsel Zahid Hussain Bukhari that it could not do so until complete copies of the case record had been provided. The judge had then directed prosecutors to provide complete copies of the case to the accused.
On Tuesday’s hearing, Davis refused to receive any documents or sign the charge-sheet. His attorneys said they had received it on his behalf and asked the court could include it in its orders. Sources said they sought further time to prepare for the trial.
The US consul general in Lahore Carmela Conroy was permitted for the first time by the trial court to attend the proceedings. Two Americans, who had recently arrived in Lahore to assist Davis’ local counsels, were also present during the course of proceedings.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 9th, 2011.
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