Less than two weeks before the nation votes in an election that his party has been prevented from contesting, former Pakistani prime minister Imran Khan was sentenced to ten years in prison on Tuesday.
The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) founder Imran Khan and Vice Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi were handed a 10-year prison sentence in the cipher case by a special court in Pakistan on Tuesday.
The cipher case concerns a diplomatic cable, which reportedly went missing from Khan’s possession. Khan had repeatedly said before and after the no-confidence motion against him last year that the cipher pointed to a conspiracy to remove him from the prime minister’s office.
Ten witnesses had shown up to give statements in the case against Qureshi and Khan. They were brought by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) of Pakistan, which filed a complaint against Khan and Qureshi in August for allegedly disclosing information about the official diplomatic correspondence in violation of the nation’s secret laws, according to PTI.
In December, Pakistan’s Supreme Court had granted post-arrest bails to Khan and Qureshi. Although Imran remained detained in other cases, Qureshi’s anticipated release was delayed as he was reportedly manhandled and re-arrested in a new case on May 9, as reported by the Dawn.