Police did not take any steps to arrest Regent Group Chairman Md Shahed despite two arrest warrants -- including a conviction warrant -- were issued against him in 2010 by a Dhaka court in a cheque dishonour case, a prosecutor alleged.
On August 18, 2010, Judge Md Harunur Rashed of the First Additional Metropolitan Sessions Judge's Court of Dhaka sentenced Shahed to six months of simple imprisonment and fined him Tk 53 lakh in absentia in the cheque dishonour case.
In failing to pay the fine, Shahed will suffer six months more in jail, the judge said in his judgement, adding that the punishment will be effective from the day of his arrest or surrender.
The judge also issued a conviction warrant against him and sent the copy of the warrant to Uttara Purba Police Station.
Meanwhile, Judge Faisal Atiq Bin Kader of the same court on July 14 this year issued another conviction warrant against Shahed following a petition submitted by the prosecution.
Before that order for arrest, the same court cancelled his bail on October 5 of 2009 and issued arrest warrant against him as he was absent from the court without any information.
But police did not take any step to arrest him, Additional Public Prosecutor Abdus Sattar Dulal told The Daily Star yesterday.
As per provision, if a copy of arrest warrant issued against an accused is sent to a police station, they are supposed to arrest the accused. If police can arrest the accused, they will produce him/her before the concerned court. If police can't arrest or don't find them at their specific addresses, they will submit a report to the court about it.
But in this case, police did not submit any report on execution of the arrest warrant, the prosecution alleged.
Asked, officer-in-charge (OC) of Uttara Purba Police Station Nur-e Alam told The Daily Star that he did not know about those arrest warrants as he was not posted at the station during that time.
But he executed the latest conviction warrant issued on July 14 this year, said the OC.
According to the prosecution, Shahed, proprietor of RS Shipping &Trading located at Sector-6 in Uttara, bought electronic equipment, including lights from Md Mojibur Rahman, proprietor of Green Connection International located on Babur Road in Mohammadpur in 2007, at the cost of Tk 50 lakh.
On November 29 of 2007, Shahed issued two cheques of Tk 50 lakh against the dues.
On January 29 of 2008, the two cheques were dishonoured as there was not sufficient funds in Shahed's bank account.
Mojibur Rahman then informed it to Shahed but he did not pay heed to it. Finding no alternative, Mojibur on February 28 of 2008 through his lawyer served a legal notice asking Shahed to pay his Tk 50 lakh within 30 days from the day of receipt of the notice.
Shahed this time also did not take any initiative to pay the money. On March 1 the same year, Mojibur Rahman through his lawyer published an advertisement in a newspaper -- the daily Manabjamin -- asking Shahed to pay the money. But Shahed did not respond.
Later on August 24 of 2008, Mojibur filed a cheque dishonour case with the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate's Court of Dhaka.
After the hearing, the court issued summons asking Shahed to appear before it to narrate his explanation.
On June 2 of 2009, Shahed secured bail on his surrender before a Dhaka court.
The case was then transferred to the Metropolitan Sessions Judge's Court of Dhaka for its disposal.
Charge was framed against him on October 26.
On July 22 of 2010, complainant gave his deposition before the court against the accused in his absence.
Shahed was arrested on July 15 this year from Satkhira while he was trying to flee the country on a boat.
He was later placed on a 10-day remand in connection with a case filed over issuing fake Covid-19 results and charging patients for the reports and treatment.