Zainab rape, murder case convict challenges death sentence


In this photograph released by the family of Pakistani child Zainab Fatima Ameen on January 17, 2018, Zainab, 6, stands outside her home in Kasur in Pakistan's Punjab province.
The rape and murders of a dozen children by a suspected serial killer have terrified parents in central Pakistan, and prompted soul-searching over how the country fails to protect its most vulnerable. The killing of six-year-old Zainab Fatima Ameen became the tipping point last week when her body was found on a rubbish heap near her home in the city of Kasur.  / AFP PHOTO / The family of Zainab Fatima Ameen / FAMILY HANDOUT        (Photo credit should read FAMILY HANDOUT/AFP/Getty Images)
In this photograph released by the family of Pakistani child Zainab Fatima Ameen on January 17, 2018, Zainab, 6, stands outside her home in Kasur in Pakistan's Punjab province. The rape and murders of a dozen children by a suspected serial killer have terrified parents in central Pakistan, and prompted soul-searching over how the country fails to protect its most vulnerable. The killing of six-year-old Zainab Fatima Ameen became the tipping point last week when her body was found on a rubbish heap near her home in the city of Kasur. / AFP PHOTO / The family of Zainab Fatima Ameen / FAMILY HANDOUT (Photo credit should read FAMILY HANDOUT/AFP/Getty Images)

The man convicted in the rape and murder case of minor Zainab is contesting the death sentence given to him by an anti-terrorism court (ATC). In the appeal filed in Lahore High Court, Imran Ali alleges his trial was conducted in haste and therefore the verdict should be declared “null and void.”

On February 17, an ATC awarded four death penalties to Imran Ali, the man responsible for the abduction, rape and murder of Kasur’s seven-year-old Zainab. The court also sentenced him to life imprisonment and a separate 7-year term and imposed a fine of Rs3.1 million. He was also asked to pay Rs 1 million as compensation to Zainab’s family.

Zainab Amin was abducted on January 4 from near her aunt’s house in Kasur.

Ali’s arrest has been met with shock, with locals revealing that Ali and Zainab’s family knew each other well and he had even visited her house a number of times before. He was seen at Zainab’s funeral and was even part of a protest march that condemned what happened to the seven-year-old.

Ali reportedly lured Zainab saying he was going to meet her parents who were at the time away in Saudi Arabia on a pilgrimage. He lured his other victims by promising to buy them sweets, hair clips and snacks.

Zainab was staying with her uncle when she went missing. Zainab was on her way to her Koran classes when she was kidnapped. Her body was recovered from a garbage heap several days later and according to her autopsy report, Zainab was raped before she was killed.

Ali was wearing a zip-up jacket when he kidnapped Zainab and this helped police narrow down the suspects. Security camera images obtained from a hardware shop showed Zainab with a man wearing a dark coloured jacket, and while searching Ali’s home police officials found a similar jacket, which eventually led to Ali’s arrest.