Banani hotel rape charge 'credible', police say
Published : 19 May 2017, 13:52
Police after questioning five suspects of the Dhaka hotel rape case have found the accusations to be 'credible'.
Four of the case's suspects were questioned in custody while Nayem Ashraf aka Halim, one of the key accused, faced preliminary grilling after arrest from Munshiganj.
"The accusations were found to be credible. He (Nayem) will face further questioning," said Monirul Islam, additional commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police, at a press briefing on Thursday.
Two university students accused five men in a rape case filed with Banani police earlier this month.
Safat Ahmed, son of an Apan Jewellers owner, had invited them to his birthday party at Banani's Raintree Hotel on Mar 28.
The girls said he and his friend Nayem Ashraf forced them inside a room and raped them at gunpoint.
They accused three others -- Regnum group director Shadman Sakif, Safat's driver Billal Hossain and bodyguard Rahmat Ali -- of aiding the rapists and filming the sexual assault.
Safat and Shadman were arrested from Sylhet on May 11. Billal and Rahmat were arrested in Dhaka this week.
The four remanded to police custody have "admitted to committing a lot of what they have been accused of", said Monirul. "We are verifying the information they gave us."
The police had primary information of the crime which was consistent with rape as defined in law, he said.
The remand period granted to police for the four suspects were not finished and the fifth suspect has just been caught, he said. "It will not be appropriate to comment now."
"We have just started questioning the main accused. We have learned that there was sexual intercourse. We'll know what happened after we finish our interrogation," said the top DMP official.
The case involves wealthy suspects and the hotel where the rapes took place is owned by the children of ruling Awami League MP Bazlul Haque Haroon.
The alleged victims mentioned of threats meted out to them by the suspects which caused them to delay notifying the authorities by more than a month.
A probe committee has been formed over their allegations that police initially refused to book their case.
"The law does not recognise powerful men. A criminal is simply a criminal. We'll take action against anyone else related to this incident," said Monirul.
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