Home Latest News FIA Appeals PTI Leaders’ Acquittal in Cipher Case at Supreme Court

FIA Appeals PTI Leaders’ Acquittal in Cipher Case at Supreme Court

Petition states high court lacked jurisdiction in the case and ruling does not reflect facts of case

by Staff Report

File photo

The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on Thursday petitioned the Supreme Court against the acquittal of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leaders Imran Khan and Shah Mahmood Qureshi in the cipher case, arguing the Islamabad High Court (IHC) lacked jurisdiction in the case.

The former prime minister and foreign minister were sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment each in January, just days before the Feb. 8 general elections, over Khan making public the classified cipher during a rally on March 27, 2022. In his speech, Khan alleged the cipher contained a demand from a foreign nation for the ouster of his government. While he did not mention the origin of the cipher in that speech, he subsequently pointed the finger at the United States. The government and the U.S. both have since denied any conspiracy.

Earlier this month, the IHC nullified the convictions of the incarcerated PTI leaders and acquitted them on all charges of misusing and misplacing a classified diplomatic document. Referring to the ruling, the FIA petition describes the IHC judgment as perverse, arbitrary, and contrary to the material available on the record. It asserts that the IHC judgement did not appreciate that the court lacks jurisdiction or power to create rights that are not provided by the Constitution or through a validly enacted law.

“It was neither a case of casus omissus nor necessitated application of doctrine of reading in as no constitutional guarantees have been violated,” states the petition, adding that both respondents—Khan and Qureshi—had not cooperated throughout the trial and made every effort to delay proceedings.

“The matter was number of times adjourned on the request of the respondents or their counsels. The witnesses remained present in the court but their cross examination was not carried out by the defense counsels,” it states, adding the prosecution had produced documentary evidence as well as forensic analysis that was not negated during cross-examination. However, it said, this was not “appreciated by the honorable division bench of Islamabad High Court while acquitting the respondents.”

As such, states the petition, the acquittal ruling does not reflect the facts. It further contends the ruling has not “observed that the prosecution has failed to prove its case beyond any shadow of doubt.”

Related Articles

Leave a Comment