The High Court division of the Bangladesh Supreme Court on Monday commuted the death sentence of seven militants to life imprisonment for their involvement in an attack on a cafe in 2016. This reduction in sentence comes seven years after the defendants were sentenced to death.
On July 1, 2016, the seven militants carried out an attack on the Holey Artisan Cafe in Dhaka. They took hostages and used firearms and bombs, resulting in the death of twenty individuals. Nine Italians, seven Japanese people, one Indian, one American, and two Bangladeshi nationals were killed. During the attack, five perpetrators were killed by security forces at the cafe, and a further eight suspects were killed during security raids following the attack.
The Dhaka Special Anti-Terrorism Tribunal subsequently sentenced seven convicted militants to death on November 27, 2019. One was acquitted. However, in Bangladesh, the approval of the High Court is required to carry out a death sentence given by a trial court. All documents must be submitted to the High Court, which then grants the death penalty or reduces the sentence accordingly.