Banani Rape: Key accused Nayem
Publish | 18 May 2017, 12:43
Nayem Ashraf alias Halim, one of the prime accused in the Banani rape case, was arrested in Lohajang upazila of Munshiganj last night.
Acting on a tip-off, a special team from the police headquarters with the help of the Detective Branch of Dhaka Metropolitan Police arrested Nayem in Khidirpara area around 8:00pm, DMP Commissioner Asaduzzaman Mia said.
The arrestee was being taken to the DB office on Mintoo road in the capital, he said.
Nayem had been absconding since the case was lodged with Banani Police Station on May 6.
With him, all the five accused in the case filed for raping two private university girls in The Raintree Dhaka hotel in Banani on March 28 have been arrested.
Meanwhile, Apan Jewellers yesterday failed to show the Customs Intelligence and Investigation Directorate any valid documents of the 498kg of gold seized in recent drives on its five outlets, said CIID officials.
The owner of Raintree hotel, Shah Adnan Harun, son of a Jhalakathi lawmaker BH Harun, did not appear in the CIID office, citing health issues.
The customs intelligence seized the gold raiding the outlets of Apan Jewellers in Gulshan, Uttara, Mouchak and Shimanto Square on Sunday and Monday. The gold was seized after the brand authorities failed to provide any relevant papers.
Following the drive, customs intelligence officials asked the Apan Jewellers owners to appear in their office with the documents yesterday.
The move came after Banani rape main suspect Ahmed Shafat, son of Dildar Ahmed Selim, one of the owners of Apan Jewellers, “bragged” about being a gold smuggler to the victims.
Shafat and the other accused also boasted about their wealth and said police would not touch them when the two girls warned that they would go to the law enforcers, according to the testimony of one of the two girls.
“During today's [yesterday] interrogation, they [Apan Jewellers' owners] could not show us any papers,” Moinul Khan, director general of CIID, told reporters at a briefing at his office after the interrogation of Dildar and two other owners of Apan Jewellers.
“There is no transparency over the gold worth around Tk 250 crore,” he said.
Dildar and his brothers Gulzar Ahmed and Azad Ahmed went to the CIID headquarters around 11:50am. While coming out around 5:30pm, Dildar, however, told reporters that they had all the valid documents and they would submit them to the CIID through their lawyers.
Asked why they failed to bring the papers, he said, “Who can arrange all the papers instantly?
Following requests from the owners, the CIID officials asked them to appear in the office again on May 23 with the documents.
Moinul said, “If they can provide us with the papers, we will hand the gold to them. Otherwise, we will take appropriate action against them.”
Replying to a query, the CIID DG said they carried out the raids on the jewellery shops following “specific prior information”. He said similar operation would be launched against the outlets of other brands as well.
He claimed to have received information that some jewellery shops were selling smuggled gold.
Moinul also said they wrote to the Bangladesh Bank yesterday, asking for permission to sell seized gold in auction and making gold import easier.
Meanwhile, a CIID official said, Dildar's two brothers rebuked him yesterday in front of the customs intelligence officials, saying that they were in trouble because of Dildar and his son Shafat.
RAINTREE OWNER 'SICK'
Raintree owner Shah Adnan Harun was summoned after customs intelligence officials recovered 10 bottles of liquor from the hotel, which does not have the licence to sell alcohol. The CIID officials also said the hotel authorities were dodging tax.
On the behalf of Harun, two lawyers went to the CIID office yesterday and sought time, saying he could not appear because “he was ill”. Later, the customs intelligence officials asked the hotel owner to show up on May 23.
'CASE TO BE SOLVED SOON'
Meanwhile, DB Joint Commissioner Abdul Baten, who is also a member of the investigation assistance committee, told reporters that they were hopeful about solving the case “very soon”.
The remand of prime accused Shafat ended yesterday. Baten said, “If the accused do not give confessional statements, they [investigators] may apply for their fresh remand.”
Invited to Shafat's birthday party on March 28, the two girls went to the hotel around 9:00pm. After the party ended around midnight, Shafat and Nayem raped them in two rooms, alleged one of the two girls who filed the case.
All the accused fled Dhaka after the case was filed. Main accused Shafat, and Sakif, who introduced the girls to the “rapists” were arrested in Sylhet on May 11. Shafat's driver Billal Hossain and bodyguard Rahmat Ali, also accused in the case, were arrested in two places of the capital on Monday.
WHO IS NAYEM?
Though he introduces himself as Nayem Ashraf, it was found that his real name is Hasan Mohammad Halim, son of one Amjad Hossain, who is a resident of Gandail village in Sirajganj's Kazipur upazila, said police.
An official of Gulshan police said they had information that Halim ran an event management firm - Emakers Media and Entertainment - in the capital and used it as a means to “hobnob” with female students and introduce them to sons of rich people.
Apart from his event management firm, his social media accounts show that he owns a sheesha lounge and restaurant, which was opened in Gulshan in November 2015.
Scrutinising Nayem's social media accounts, it seems that he has developed and maintained networks with influential ruling party men from the national to the local levels and media personalities like models, TV anchors and singers.
There are allegations that Nayem used to rob people by going under the pseudonym and claiming to be a son of Gandail Union Parishad Chairman Ashraful Alam.
Contacted, the union parishad chairman said Halim cheated many women and embarrassed him by the false claim that he was his son.