Imran Khan sentenced to ten years imprisonment News
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Imran Khan sentenced to ten years imprisonment

Ex-Prime Minister of Pakistan, Imran Khan, was sentenced to ten years imprisonment on Tuesday. Vice Chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, was sentenced to the same punishment alongside Khan.

Khan, who is currently serving a three-year sentence for corruption, was trialed under accusations of “use of official secret information and illegal retention of a cypher telegram with malafide intention.” These allegations arose following Khan’s removal as Prime Minister in 2022, following which he held an opposition rally. During his speech at the rally, Khan claimed that a letter he possessed showed that a foreign power orchestrated his removal. Both Khan and Qureshi were arrested for charges of revealing official secrets.

In a statement by Khan’s lawyer posted to X (formerly Twitter) discussing the trial, he recounted that approximately eighteen witnesses were interviewed but that Khan and Qureshi’s legal team were “ousted from the court” and were not given the right to cross-examine or defend their clients. Subsequently, the lawyers complained to the Islamabad High Court about their grievances, namely, how the trial was concluded, the manner of the judge and how the advocates were thrown out of the proceedings. Khan’s lawyer described the trial as “unconstitutional” and “against the principles of natural justice.”

Khan’s lawyer stated that they will appeal to the Islamabad High Court regarding the sentences. He further commented, “It will not take us ten seconds in the Islamabad High Court … [the convictions] will be quashed straight away.”

This conviction was handed down just a week before Pakistan’s general election, in which Khan is barred from standing. In a statement released by Khan regarding the trial, he encouraged his followers to vote in the elections on February 8 to “take revenge for every injustice” and achieve justice for “innocent Pakistanis imprisoned in jails.” He further stated, “February 8 will be our day of victory.”