SHIKARPUR: An anti-terrorism court in Shikapur on Saturday convicted six men of murdering young television reporter Wali Babar, handing out death sentences to two and life imprisonment to four others.
The landmark case marks the first time anyone has been convicted for killing a Pakistani journalist.
Wali Babar, a 28-year-old journalist who worked for television channel Geo news, was shot dead on Jan 13, 2011 as he left his workplace in Karachi.
In April 2011, the police arrested five men — Faisal Mehmood, Mohammed Ali Rizvi, Mohammad Shahrukh Khan, Syed Tahir Naveed Shah and Mohammed Shakeel — for the alleged involvement in the journalist’s murder.
Two of the accused were sentenced to death in absentia today as they were never caught. One man, Mohammed Shakeel, was acquitted while the remaining four were sentenced to life in prison.
Six witnesses, a lawyer and two policemen linked to the case have previously been murdered.
Initially the case was being tried by an anti-terrorism court in Karachi. However, at the request of the Sindh government to transfer the trial from the metropolis in view of threats to the lives of case investigators, witnesses and prosecution lawyers, SHC Chief Justice Maqbool Baqar had ordered the transfer of the case to the Kashmore-Kandhkot district ATC for hearing at the Shikarpur District Prison.