Pakistan high court sentences police for mistreating then-suspended chief justice

[JURIST] The Supreme Court of Pakistan [official website] on Thursday sentenced five high-ranking police officers to between 15 days and one month in prison for mistreating Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry [official website; JURIST news archive] when President Musharraf suspended him from duties [JURIST report] on March 9, 2007. A videotape of Chaudhry's arrest showed several police officers roughly shoving him into a limousine against his will. After the prison terms were handed down, the defendants moved for a review of the sentences. The court directed the police officers to file a formal request for appeal, and their sentences were suspended pending review. DPA has more.

In July, the Supreme Court of Pakistan [official website] reinstated Chaudhry and dismissed all charges of misconduct [order; JURIST report]. Shortly after the court's decision, Chaudhry resumed his duties [JURIST report] at the high court. Many Pakistani lawyers and opposition leaders alleged that Chaudhry's March suspension was an indirect bid by Pakistani President Musharraf [official website; BBC profile] to forestall legal challenges which eventually arose when Musharraf sought to extend his eight-year rule by another five years later in the year year. Chaudhry, who assumed the chief justice position in 2005, quickly developed a reputation for his investigations of alleged government abuses involving the illegal detention of political activists.



 

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