A Bangladesh court doubled the jail term for opposition leader Khaleda Zia from five years to ten years in an orphanage graft case following an appeal by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) on Tuesday, 30 October, reported news agency AFP.
Earlier, Zia was sentenced to seven years in jail in a corruption case on Monday, 29 October.
Zia, 73, who is already serving a jail term since February after being convicted in a case related to embezzlement of funds of an orphanage named after her husband president Ziaur Rahman in February, was sentenced along with three others.
The latest sentence is related to the Zia Charitable Trust. According to the case, Zia and three others abused their power and raised funds for the trust from unknown sources.
Earlier on Monday, Bangladesh’s Supreme Court cleared the way for a lower court to deliver its verdict in the case by rejecting Zia’s plea to halt the proceedings.
The apex court rejected a leave-to-appeal petition filed by Zia challenging the High Court judgement that allowed a lower court to continue trial in the graft case in her absence.
The court on 20 September decided to continue the trial inside the old Dhaka central jail in Zia's absence.
The former premier on 27 September filed a revision petition with the High Court (HC) challenging the court's 20 September order.
On 14 October, the HC rejected Zia’s revision petition and cleared the way for the trial court to continue with its proceedings. Zia had skipped appearances in the case, citing illness.