Bangladesh court doubles jail term of former PM Khaleda Zia in orphanage grafts case

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Khaleda Zia, ex-prime minister, former Bangladesh prime minister, jailed ex-prime minister, corruption charges, jailed for corruption charges Bangladesh’s former prime minister and Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) chairperson Khaleda Zia (AP Photo/A.M. Ahad, File)

A Bangladesh court Tuesday doubled the jail term of former Bangladesh Prime Minister Khaleda Zia from five to 10 years in the orphanage grafts case, PTI reported. Zia, 73, is already behind bars after being handed a five-year term in February, this year.

The three-time former prime minister and main opposition leader was sentenced by Dhaka’s Special Court in connection with the embezzlement of 21 million taka (about $250,000) in foreign donations meant for the Zia Orphanage Trust. The verdict also sentenced Zia’s elder son and Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP’s) senior vice president Tarique Rahman for 10 years in jail.

A High Court bench comprising Justice M Enayetur Rahim and Justice Mostafizur Rahman announced the verdict after accepting the Anti-Corruption Commission’s review petition to increase Zia’s imprisonment in the Zia Orphanage Trust corruption case, The Daily Star reported. “This verdict means that Khaleda Zia will not be able to contest in the upcoming election,” ACC lawyer Khurshid Alam Khan told reporters.

On Monday, she was awarded seven years in a second corruption case for embezzling millions from a charitable trust in her late husband’s name. The case is related to the Zia Charitable Trust, in which the former prime minister and three others were found guilty of abusing their power and raising funds for the trust from unknown sources

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(Inputs from PTI)

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