Lahore High Court declares trial in Musharraf treason case illegal

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Lahore High Court declares trial in Musharraf treason case illegal

The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Monday termed as ‘unconstitutional’ the formation of a special court that had tried former president and retired general Pervez Musharraf for high treason.

It also ruled that the amended Article 6 of the Constitution, under which Musharraf had been found guilty, could not be applied in the case ‘ex post facto’ (retrospectively).

Article 6 of the Constitution was modified through the 18th Amendment in 2010, while the case against Musharraf concerned events that happened before that.

The decision came in response to a petition filed by Musharraf challenging the formation of the special court for the high treason case against him.

Musharraf had been handed the death penalty in December last year after being found guilty on five counts in a 2-1 majority verdict. Subsequently, Musharraf had approached the LHC with three petitions, filed earlier this month.

The former president had challenged not only the conviction but also the formation of the special court that handed him the death penalty for high treason, as well as the complaint filed against him by the government of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif that resulted in the trial.

However, the court had only admitted the petitions challenging the formation of the special court and the complaint registered against the former president. Subsequently, hearings into the case had proceeded before a three-member bench of the high court in the provincial capital.

The bench, comprising Justice Syed Mazaher Ali Akbar Naqvi, Justice Muhammad Ameer Bhatti and Justice Chaudhry Masood Jahangi, had earlier today reserved its verdict in the case after hearing arguments from the government and Musharraf’s lawyers.

Additional Attorney-General Ishtiaq Ahmad Khan told the court that the constitution of a special court to try Musharraf under Article 6 of the Constitution was not part of the agenda of federal cabinet meetings of the government of former premier Nawaz Sharif.

The Pervez Musharraf treason case was being widely monitored by national and international media.

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