War-crime trial witnesses threatened, bribed

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September 19, 2013

Toby Cadman, Mr Mollah’s British lawyer, said while he believed atrocities had been committed in Bangladesh, the trials of his client and others accused of war crimes had been politically motivated.

The original life imprisonment sentence had been overturned on appeal only after the government changed the law and applied it retrospectively in breach of international conventions.

Mr Cadman cited a secretly filmed meeting between a defence figure and a key witness in the war crimes trial of another Jamaat leader in which the witness said he was being forced by government threats and financial inducements to give evidence.

In the film, the witness, known as ‘Nannu’ said he and his family had been threatened and that he had been offered a large interest free loan to be a witness against Motiur Rahman Nizami, another top Jamaat leader, accused of committing atrocities. “I’ve seen this video and it’s deeply disturbing. It brings the whole process into question. If this witness has been pursued and coerced by the government, there has to be an international, independent inquiry into this whole process,” said Mr Cadman.

Source: Bangladesh Independent News Network