Pak court sentences Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi to 15 years in prison

The anti-terrorism court in Lahore found LeT commander guilty of terror financing among other charges


Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, the man accused of masterminding the 2008 Mumbai terror attack, has been convicted by a Lahore court and sentenced to serve 15 years in prison. The Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) commander was found guilty of collecting and disbursing money for terrorist activities.

Lakhvi was arrested on January 2, 2021 from Pakistan’s Punjab province and produced before the court that awarded him three five-year sentences to be served consecutively. Lakhvi was also fined Rs 3 lakhs, which if he fails to pay, he will have to serve another 18 months.

However, India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) dubbed these as “farcical actions” undertaken with an eye on the Asia Pacific Group (APG) and Financial Actions Task Force (FATF) plenary session scheduled to take place next month. Pakistan is hoping to be taken off the FATF grey list.

MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava told mediapersons, “The timing of these actions clearly suggests the intention of conveying a sense of compliance ahead of the next APG meeting and the next FATF plenary in February 2021. It has become routine for Pakistan to come up with such farcical actions prior to important meetings.” He added, “UN-proscribed entities and designated terrorists act as proxies for the Pakistani establishment to fulfil its anti-India agenda. It is for the international community to hold Pakistan to account and ensure that it takes credible action against terror groups, terror infrastructure and individual terrorists.”

Lakhvi will serve his sentence at Rawalpindi’s Adiala Jail. It is noteworthy that Lakhvi had first been arrested in December 2008 and jailed in 2009. But he was released on bail in 2015. It is alleged that Lakhvi had access to mobile phones even in prison from where he continued to run terror operations.

Last year, another mastermind of the Mumbai terror attack, Jamat-ul-Dawa (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed was convicted in separate cases in February, November and December in Pakistan, and sentenced to serve 11 years, 10 years and 15 years respectively. 



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