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7 militants sentenced to death in Bangladesh

Additional district and sessions judge Tarique Ahmed announced the verdict in a crowded courtroom in southern Jhalakathi town.

india Updated: May 30, 2006 16:00 IST

A court in Bangladesh on Monday sentenced seven militants, including chief of the banned Jamaatul Mujaheedin Bangladesh (JMB) Shaekh Abdur Rahman and his second-in-command Siddiqur Rahman, to death for the murder of two judges.

Additional district and sessions judge Tarique Reza Ahmed announced the verdict in a crowded courtroom in southern Jhalakathi town, where the two judges were killed in a suicide bomb attack on November 14, 2005.

Five others awarded the capital punishment are Ataur Rahman Sunny, Abdul Awal, Khaled Saifullah, Asadur Rahman Arif and Iftekhar Hasan Al Mamun. Among them, Arif is absconding. The rest heard the judgement from the dock. Another Sultan Hossain was acquitted from the charge.

Two senior assistant judges -- Sohel Ahammad and Jagannath Pande -- were killed in a suicide bomb attack when they were going to the court by a bus.

"It is beyond any doubt that these men had committed the crime. I order them to be hanged until death," judge Ahmed said while announcing the verdict.

Sultan Hossain Khan, a driver of the Jhalakathi judgeship, had filed two separate cases with Jhalakathi police station -- one in connection with the murders and another under explosives act.

The charge was framed on April 23 and 45 witnesses, out of 53, submitted witness accounts in eight working days from April 28 to May 8.