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Sindh Likely to File Appeal Against Daniel Pearl Case Verdict

KARACHI: The Sindh government has started consultation over the filing of appeal against the Sindh High Court verdict in the US journalist Daniel Pearl’s murder case.

According to sources, the Sindh government likely to approach the Supreme Court against the SHC verdict tomorrow.

On the other hand, the interior department Sindh has halted the release of all four accused and detained them.

The Sindh High Court on Thursday commuted the death sentence of the main person accused in the 2002 kidnapping and murder of an American Wall Street Journal reporter, Daniel Pearl, and acquitted three other co-accused in the matter.

All four had been convicted in connection with Pearl’s kidnapping and murder, including British-born Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh, who was sentenced to death in 2002 for masterminding the murder. He has been in jail for 18 years awaiting the outcome of an appeal.

Pearl, 38, was investigating Islamist militants in Karachi after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States when he was kidnapped in January 2002. His case grabbed headlines globally, after a video of his beheading emerged weeks after Pearl was abducted.

“No evidence has been brought on record by the prosecution to link any of the appellants to the murder of Pearl and as such all the appellants are acquitted of murder,” said a two-member bench of the Sindh High Court, in a ruling seen by Reuters.

The United States slammed the ruling, with the top U.S. diplomat for South Asia writing on Twitter that the verdict “is an affront to victims of terrorism everywhere.”

The court also acquitted all four of charges of kidnapping the American for ransom too, and found Sheikh guilty only on the charge of abduction.