Verdict In Corruption Case Against Khaleda Zia On October 29

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Dhaka (IANS): A Dhaka court will announce its verdict on former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia in the Zia Charitable Trust corruption case on October 29.

Judge Md Akhtaruzzaman of the Special Court-5 in Dhaka fixed the date after rejecting the petition filed by Khaleda’s lawyer seeking adjournment of the hearing of the graft case, bdnews24.com reported.

The case was filed against the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) chief by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) eight years ago. The ACC had accused Khaleda and three others of embezzling 31.54 million taka ($397,435) from the Zia Charitable Trust.

In 2010, the trial began at a makeshift court inside the Old Dhaka jailhouse. However, Khaleda skipped court appearances citing her illness, prompting the judge to proceed with the trial in the absence of the key suspect.

She was sentenced to five years in prison on February 8 in a separate graft case involving the Zia Orphanage Trust. In this case, Khaleda and five others, including her elder son Tarique Rahman, were accused of embezzling over 20 million taka ($253,164) from the orphanage trust during her 2001-2006 Prime Minister term.

Khaleda has reportedly been facing dozens of cases, including five on corruption charges and 15 for masterminding violence during their anti-government movement since 2014.

Khaleda has often said that political vendettas were to blame for the cases against her and her son.

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