GILGIT: An anti-terrorism court in Gilgit-Baltistan on Thursday sentenced four men to death for kidnapping, raping and brutally murdering a teenage boy in the Ishkoman tehsil. ATC No 1’s judge Raja Shahzada who heard the case pronounced the verdict.
The incident occurred in February when the boy was kidnapped from the far-flung area of Immat village of tehsil Ishkoman and his body was later recovered from Qurumbar river. Area police confirmed that the boy was sexually assaulted before being strangled to death.
The boy’s father had filed an application with the police on February 6, in which he stated that his son, whose age he approximated to be between 15 and 16, left home to purchase ‘easy load’ credit for his mobile phone but never returned.
Police after registering a First Information Report arrested four suspects, namely Aziz, Muhammad Umer, Noor Azam, and Noor Muhammad, who confessed to the crime.
The trial was concluded over a period of one month during which evidence and statements provided by witnesses proved the charges of kidnap, rape, and murder.
All four men were sentenced to death under Section 302 (punishment for murder) of the Pakistan Penal Code and Section 6 and 7 of the Anti Terrorism Act. They were ordered by the judge to pay a fine of Rs0.3 million each, the family’s lawyer Nazir Ahmed told DawnNewsTV.
Additionally, the four convicts were sentenced to life imprisonment and the judge imposed a fine of Rs0.2 million on each of them. Under Section 377 (unnatural offences) and Section 34 of the Pakistan Penal Code, the four were sentenced to ten years imprisonment along with a fine of Rs0.2 million each. Under Section 201 (causing disappearance of evidence of offence, or giving false information to screen offender) and Section 34 of the Pakistan Penal Code, the four were sentenced to five years of imprisonment along with a fine of Rs0.1 million each.
The convict Aziz was handed two years extra in jail. According to the lawyer, this was due to the fact that “the judge felt Aziz had more of a role than the others in the crimes”. According to the ATC judgment, the four convicts have a period of 15 days within which to appeal their sentences in the Gilgit-Baltistan Chief Court.