Crime & Justice

Bangladesh court grants bail to Rana Plaza owner after 10 years

Dhaka, Apr 6 (EFE) – A Bangladesh court on Thursday granted bail to Sohel Rana, the owner of Rana Plaza, in a murder case filed against him, paving the way for his release after nearly 10 years in jail.

“The High Court today granted bail to Sohel Rana. No other case is pending against him at the moment. So he can be released unless the appellate division stays his bail,” Sohel Rana’s lawyer Qamrul Islam told EFE.

Confirming the bail order, deputy attorney general Mohiuddin Dewan told EFE that they would appeal against it before the Supreme Court.

“We have already informed the court that we will file an appeal against this order,’’ he said.

On Apr.24, 2013, the eight-storeyed Rana Plaza commercial building on the outskirts of the capital collapsed, leaving around 1,130 people dead and more than 2,500 injured.

Five days after the incident Sohel Rana was arrested by the special security force Rapid Action Battalion as he attempted to flee to neighboring India.

The murder trial against Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana and 35 others resumed in January 2022 after a court framed charges against the accused to start the process.

The trial had its first hearing on Sep.18, 2016, and has since then been postponed several times on different procedural grounds.

Among the 41 original defendants, three have died already, including the father of the main defendant Sohel Rana.

All other accused, except Sohel Rana, are now out of jail at the moment, said deputy attorney general Dewan.

Sohel Rana already served a three-year prison sentence imposed in 2017 for having illegal wealth and has a few other cases pending against him.

The building in Bangladesh’s industrial town of Savar, near the capital city of Dhaka, housed five readymade garment companies that produced clothes for about 30 international brands.

The authorities took three weeks to remove the debris from the scene and recover the bodies from the accident site.

Textiles account for more than 80 percent of Bangladesh’s total exports. EFE


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