Court defers Banani rape indictment

Dhaka,  Sun,  20 August 2017
Published : 09 Jul 2017, 13:52:54
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Dhaka hotel rape: Court defers hearing of indictment

The indictment hearing in the case of rape of two university students at a hotel in the capital's posh Banani neighbourhood has been deferred.

A Dhaka court on Sunday has rescheduled the hearing for Jul 13 after granting the defence's plea for more time.

Police have pressed charges against five people, including Apan Jewellers owner's son Safat Ahmed and his two friends-- Nayem Ashraf and Regnum group director Shadman Sakif.

The two others are Shafat's driver Billal Hossain and bodyguard Rahmat Ali.

All five suspects were present at the indictment hearing on Sunday, reports bdnews24.com.

Ashraf’s lawyers moved for more time, which was supported by the other defence counsels.

Sakif petitioned the court to disregard his confessional statement recorded by a magistrate, claiming it had been obtained through violence.

All five suspects had given confessional statements under Section 164 of the Code of Criminal Procedure or CrPC, which allows magistrates to record confessions of any person which can be used as evidence in trial.

Dhaka Women and Children Repression Prevention Tribunal – 2 Judge Mohammad Safiul Azam ordered Sakif's petition be put on the record.

The judge, however, urged the defence not to delay, saying that an indictment would help them and also speed up the trial. He added that public interest in the trial also called for swiftness.

Judge Azam did, however, grant the defence’s petition for more time. 

Two university students accused the men of rape in a case filed with Banani police in May.

Safat Ahmed had invited them to his birthday party at Banani's Raintree Hotel on Mar 28. The girls said he and his friend Ashraf forced them inside a room and raped them at gunpoint.

They accused three others of aiding the rapists and filming the sexual assault.

Shafat and Shadman were arrested from Sylhet on May 11. Billal and Rahmat were arrested in Dhaka on May 15.

Two days later, Nayem Ashraf, known as Hasan Mohammad Halim in his native Sirajganj, was arrested from Munshiganj. 

 
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