Karachi: Release of 2 policemen sought in extortion case
KARACHI: An investigating officer on Friday submitted his report in an anti–terrorism court and sought release of two policemen booked in an extortion case. Assistant sub–inspector Javed Iqbal and constable Muzaffar Khan along with their absconding colleague, constable Waseem Zaidi, were booked on June 29 for allegedly demanding protection money from a shopkeeper at Jama Cloth Market. The IO, Inspector Israr, submitted a report under Section 169 (release of accused when evidence deficient) of the criminal procedure code (CrPC) stating that sufficient evidence linking the suspects with the alleged offence was not found during the course of investigation. The report recommended release of the suspects. However, ATC-III Judge Ghulam Mustafa Memon directed the IO to submit a final report under Section 173 of CrPC.
According to the prosecution, the plain-clothes policemen engaged in a heated argument with a trader over the alleged demand of protection money. The policemen claimed that they were inquiring about the trader’s suspected involvement in the illegal money transfer trade (Hawala). A scuffle broke out between the policemen and shopkeepers when the policemen tried to take away the trader. The area police were called in and ASI Javed Iqbal was arrested. The shopkeepers had already caught constable Muzaffar Khan, who was also handed over to the police, the prosecution said.
The policemen were associated with the special investigation unit of police and it was not clear whether SIU was authorised to handle the illegal money transfer cases, which are usually handled by FIA.
The case (FIR No.185/12) was registered under Sections 385 (putting person in fear of injury in order to commit extortion) and 385 (extortion by putting a person in fear of death or of grievous hurt) and 34 (common intention) of the Pakistan Penal Code read with Section 7 of the Anti–terrorism Act at the Aram Bagh police station against the policemen.