Crumbling trial: Eyewitnesses retract statements in Shahzeb Khan case

Published: March 25, 2013
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A file photo of protesters holding placards calling for justice. PHOTO: ATHAR KHAN/THE EXPRESS TRIBUNE

A file photo of protesters holding placards calling for justice. PHOTO: ATHAR KHAN/THE EXPRESS TRIBUNE

KARACHI: Two eyewitnesses retracted their statements during the hearing of Shahzeb Khan’s murder case in the Karachi Registry of the Supreme Court on Monday, reported Express News.

The reason given for taking their statements back was that there was no electricity in the apartments at the time of the alleged shooting, thus making it difficult to identify persons in the dark.

The two eyewitnesses were not present at the site of the shooting. They were residents of the apartments where the incident allegedly took place.

More witnesses are due to present their statements in the hearing on Monday.

Shahzeb, the 20-year-old son of a police officer, was shot dead in his car on December 25, 2012, in the upscale Defence neighbourhood of Karachi.  Shahrukh Jatoi, his friends Siraj Talpur, Sajjad Talpur and their house worker Ghulam Mustafa Lashari are being tried for murder in the Anti Terrorism Court (ATC).

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Reader Comments (55)

  • Saad
    Mar 25, 2013 - 12:40PM

    Same story again, Feudal’s of Pakistan proving they can buy/threat eye witnesses because of their power/authority. So sad, I was hoping the person responsible would be hanged.

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  • Justice
    Mar 25, 2013 - 12:43PM

    Oh come on:(

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  • waqas
    Mar 25, 2013 - 12:43PM

    Soul sold

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  • In the know...
    Mar 25, 2013 - 12:50PM

    I don’t blame the witnesses. Bravado aside, it is not easy to fend off life threats to one’s own self and family members. With the state unable to provide security to the elite of the country, what can one expect for the common man.

    Very, very unfortunate indeed. Let’s hope the other witnesses have super-human courage and can stand up to the kind of harassment and threats they must be facing.

    If all else fails and Shahrukh Jatoi is released, I would have lost all hope and faith in this nation!!!

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  • Rumormonger
    Mar 25, 2013 - 12:53PM

    Another travesty of Justice in the making. If this case is lost, DHA can become Lyari in times to come.

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  • Salman
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:00PM

    all along Shahrukh has been very comfy in police protection…. he knows well who this system serves to…………… in the end it will be victory of injustice

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  • Green Tiger
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:01PM

    This is why we need Taliban justice.

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  • Amer
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:04PM

    Our justice system had failed us too many times to have any faith in it now. The witnesses must be under immense pressure from the gun trolling elite who killed Shahzeb. If the killers of Shahzeb are not punished there will be no hope left for getting any justice in Karachi.

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  • xyz
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:09PM

    How easy is it to evade the system!

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  • Anonymous
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:09PM

    “Democracy is the best revenge.”

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  • Saad
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:11PM

    Shame on us as a nation

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  • bilal
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:20PM

    We will not leave the culprits till the justice is served.

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  • umer
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:23PM

    Fantastic !

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  • Mmjuma
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:27PM

    Honestly we are not sure of the fact that it was sharukh , innocent until proven guilty , plus he is just too handsome to be brought to justice .

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  • Acorn Guts
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:42PM

    Although there is still of evidence to maintain the trial, I doubt we’ll see the case conclude logically ..

    @Mmjuma: Innocent until proven guilty does not apply to those who prove they are guilty by running off to Dubai

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  • Beatle
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:43PM

    They must be afraid of meeting the same fate of Shahzeb Khan.
    Poor Guys.

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  • faheema
    Mar 25, 2013 - 1:50PM

    Soon Shah Rukh will be free, other witnesses will back tract too.

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  • Sajid
    Mar 25, 2013 - 2:01PM

    Justice delayed is justice denied. It’s almost three months and still case is going on seems to be fishy. As the dominant party will use all this prolong time to buy all the witness and use all dirty tacticts to make this case weak. Few days latter nobody will follow the same case and in the shadow of upcoming election dust will get settle and at that time culprit will be proven not guilty. This time with his genuine passport and visa will leave the country honourably slapping in the face of system laughing out loudly.

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  • FN
    Mar 25, 2013 - 2:04PM

    Doesn’t come as a surprise. It’s like the concept of Might is right. ‘Jis ki lathi us ki bhains’

    Sad reality. No wonder we’re in deep mess as a nation.

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  • Rana Amjad
    Mar 25, 2013 - 2:15PM

    In this country, if you have money you can buy anything & get away murdering in broad day light.

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  • Jibran
    Mar 25, 2013 - 2:17PM

    How an SP or DSP afford to live in an upscale residential area, and to give his son/daughters brand new cars as their birthday presents. Explains why Karachi is such a mess.

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  • Rana
    Mar 25, 2013 - 2:31PM

    Justice served by the Dark Justice!! Not difficult to predict outcome of further proceedings….

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  • raja khosa
    Mar 25, 2013 - 2:45PM

    Wow Gud

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  • SAJ
    Mar 25, 2013 - 2:52PM

    What do you expect the CJ to do here when the witnesses them-self has taken back their statements. This whole system needs to be revised.

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  • Abdul Samad
    Mar 25, 2013 - 2:54PM

    Sad indeed. Justice will be served one day, if not here than in the Court of Almighty ALLAH. We are living in a land where people are instinctively patriotic but they misguidedly adopt their approaches into jingoism. We are repressed, suppressed and live in a bleak situation. But these are the ingredients which instigate a common man to revolt. It took France 153 years to become what it is known today. And it has only been 66 years to us. We will conquer our fears one day as the saying goes what goes around, comes around.

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  • Ammad Raja
    Mar 25, 2013 - 2:55PM

    It seems like the spineless Shahrukh Jatoi and other killers will walk away freely, slapping everyone one of us including the system and so-called Justice system. IF this sad thing happens, tomorrow it will be one of us and the same injustice will be served again. People will say that yes you need Taliban Justice system in this country when the so-called Azaad Adlia will FAIL TO DELIVER JUSTICE ON TIME.

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  • Zaida P
    Mar 25, 2013 - 3:15PM

    Imran Khan can fix this justice system in 9 days. (Or has it come down to 6 days now?)

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  • Ahmed
    Mar 25, 2013 - 3:17PM

    With no witness protection system what you can expect ?

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  • Contributer
    Mar 25, 2013 - 3:40PM

    Its sad but Jaisa kerna waisa bherna, I feel his father is not intrested in this case anymore.
    He got a place in Traffic License Branch where he can issue Driving Licenses to Blind people and take revenge of his son.

    Getting compensation is best revenge!

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  • Syed Hasan Atizaz
    Mar 25, 2013 - 3:46PM

    what happened to all those who said they going to testify in the court – point blank. ?Recommend

  • CSI
    Mar 25, 2013 - 3:47PM

    When on earth will we use modern crime investigation technology ? Forensic analysis……he can be proved guilty if he is guilty with in no time…….let Imran come”

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  • Parvez
    Mar 25, 2013 - 4:08PM

    The sitting judge has immense powers to use, to ensure that justice is done. When something like this happens the question to ask is ‘ Why is the judge allowing this travisty of justice ? ‘

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  • Syed
    Mar 25, 2013 - 4:25PM

    I am sorry I accident clicked on the comment above that said “This is why we need Taliban justice”. Taliban and justice don’t belong together.

    Sharukh may not get the punishment he deserves in this world but what will he do once he die?Recommend

  • ZYZE
    Mar 25, 2013 - 4:55PM

    @CSI:
    what about using …A polygraph (popularly referred to as a lie detector).

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  • ALFA
    Mar 25, 2013 - 4:58PM

    Why is this case being given preferential treatment when hundreds of similar cases are pending in lower courts for years or are settled through payment of blood money. Efforts should be made to improve the judicial system to give every case similar priority. SC should resist taking notice because it amounts to interfering in the process of the lower courts. In this particular case the accused has lost the remedy of approaching the apex court, if convicted, as the SC is helping the prosecutors to convict the accused.

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  • Kashif
    Mar 25, 2013 - 5:05PM

    @Contributer:
    lol very true.

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  • Sirf Pakistani
    Mar 25, 2013 - 5:21PM

    “The two eyewitnesses were not present at the site of the shooting. They were residents of the apartments where the incident allegedly took place.”

    So i guess actual witnesses ( victim’s friends) whom the whole nation witnessed on television, who were allegedly picked up by the police officers and were forced to identify a wrong vehicle as the one used in the incident, will record their statement today. I just hope they stick to what they vehemently said on the television….”come what may we will not retract from our statements.”

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  • Jibran
    Mar 25, 2013 - 5:24PM

    Seems like everyone here is a witness, given the surety in their comments. Bottom line is that, let there be justice. Guilty should be sentenced, and equally important the innocent should not be punished. Being the son of a landlord is not a crime, and most of the venom spewed on these pages is targeting that.

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  • Jibran
    Mar 25, 2013 - 5:31PM

    @Syed Hasan Atizaz:
    How can there be Tens of witnesses at 4:00 am in the morning? If there were then it can only be that the deceased took A gang with him to teach A lesson. Things might have gone out of hand afterwards, or even self defense.

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  • Bloom
    Mar 25, 2013 - 6:18PM

    Very sad to see a comment above bout “Need for Taliban Justice”.
    Why people are feeling pain today and didn’t feel anything when terrorists were released by the courts due to lack of witness and even no one appeared to be witness.

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  • Brian
    Mar 25, 2013 - 6:19PM

    I notice NONE of you also picked up on the FACT that Shahzeb’s UNCLE was discredited as a witness for signing a BLANK legal form that the IO and DSP could fill out with whatever info they liked! When questioned in Court the Uncle could not state what was even written on his SIGNED witness form as he admitted that HE DID NOT fill it out!
    Further, I ALSO notice that you did not pick up on the MLO’s testimony which stated that Shahzeb could have died from being moved because he had a spinal fracture…..
    Further, it was DARK and no-one can be identified due to no/poor lighting!
    Also that NONE of you picked up that the IO is himself currently ON TRIAL for CORRUPTION!

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  • Jaguar
    Mar 25, 2013 - 6:30PM

    no justice on this planet only in the court of Almighty Allah……why eyewitnesses called again?havent they testified before….

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  • saleem
    Mar 25, 2013 - 6:40PM

    Only a couple of hours back I saw these feudal types blocking a road and man-handling a traffic cop. They were blocking a road. Action must be taken.

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  • Adnan
    Mar 25, 2013 - 6:57PM

    To the people lambasting the witness, put your hands on your heart and say how many of us would have not retracted. In a city where every day scores of people die and the murderers are at large, who will dare to say the truth when on the line is not only ones life, but the lives and honour of the entire family. Today the devil is again smiling on us as devils worshipers are winning again!!!

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  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Mar 25, 2013 - 7:05PM

    Its Karma. The father of victim must had played same games with innocent people. These things are normal in our judicial system.

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  • shahid
    Mar 25, 2013 - 7:11PM

    The witnesses already identified and recorded thier statement earlier identifying the culprit so what was the need and rationale to repeat or redo the process again??????

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  • Sirf Pakistani
    Mar 25, 2013 - 8:01PM

    @Ch. Allah Daad:
    Never judge a book by its cover. How could you possibly know about his father’s dealings or the way he conducted his duties?

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  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Mar 25, 2013 - 9:55PM

    @ Sirf Pakistani, I don’t know victim nor his father but I know police department and judicial system very well. Most of them are corrupt and those who are not ( I wish I would see one in my life) cannot afford to live in posh locality and drive brand new cars.

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  • Eyes Wide Shut
    Mar 25, 2013 - 10:37PM

    No way!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :@ I hope there are other witnesses as well who don’t retract their statement! Justice must be served and this case must become an example for these spoiled brats!

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  • Parvez
    Mar 25, 2013 - 11:04PM

    @Syed: In Sharookh’s mind he is as good a Muslim as you are, only your interpretation and his do not match, so in his mind he is fine………….and that is why crimes are taken to a court for the judge to administer justice. The responsibility falls on the judge. You may ask how the judge will face himself after he dies, if he does not administer justice as he is oath bound to do.

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  • hina
    Mar 25, 2013 - 11:45PM

    even if he is released.. the killer of an innocent man dies the worst death possible given by Aallah….. seen too many times in the past… so dont worry, he’ll be punished in this world and after.

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  • Sam
    Mar 26, 2013 - 12:20AM

    So much pressure. What would you do if you were in their shoes?Recommend

  • Mera Pakistan
    Mar 26, 2013 - 2:15AM

    WoW! This really proves why justice is so freak’n blind and it is a shame to see this happen to the son of a civil servant, let alone the people of Pakistan. It is all a power game full of money… Surprisingly, if the clad of criminals as the perpetrators were innocent, they would not have fled in the first place; but as every other day in Pakistan, one can only hope and pray.

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  • Usman
    Mar 26, 2013 - 9:08AM

    We need a witness protection law now

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  • Junaid
    Mar 26, 2013 - 11:55AM

    In case these murderers are released, the youth of Karachi might be justified in resorting to mob violence and beating both of them to death. That would be the absolute last resort in a crumbling justice system….mob justice. I hope it doesnt come to such a conclusion.

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