The murderer of Pakistani social media celebrity Qandeel Baloch’s brother has been acquitted.
Muhammed Waseem was sentenced to life in jail in July 2016 after confessing to the murder of Ms Baloch, branded the “Kim Kardashian of Pakistan.”
He said at the time that it was because the celebrity had embarrassed the family.
The court ruling hasn’t been made public yet, but attorneys say it was issued when Waseem recanted his confession and his parents demanded his release.
Baloch’s assassination in 2016 shocked Pakistan and made international headlines.
After sharing often filthy images, remarks, and videos on social media networks with hundreds of thousands of followers, the 26-year-old had become a household figure in Pakistan.
Although it’s unclear if the court took the mother’s comments into account when making its conclusion. Waseem confessed to murdering his 26-year-old sister because of her social media activity in 2016. Police eventually freed Mufti Abdul Qawi, a professor who was also detained for his suspected participation in the murder.
In Pakistan, Islamic law has historically enabled a murder victim’s family to pardon a convicted killer.
Baloch’s parents were initially adamant that their son not be absolved. However, they later changed their minds.
Muhammad Waseem’s mother, according to his lawyer, has given “her consent” to his pardon. However, with a recent change in Pakistani law, criminals can no longer ask the victim’s family for forgiveness. Only a court may determine if a murder is a “honour killing,” which means the perpetrators might claim a different cause for their release.
The primary witnesses had recanted their evidence, according to the lawyer, resulting in Baloch’s brother’s acquittal.
She was fully aware of the traditional Muslim country’s objections, yet she was unrepentant.
Waseem, her brother, said he had poisoned and strangled her “for dishonouring the Baloch name” For her murder, he was sentenced to life in prison in late 2019.
Waseem’s lawyer told the BBC that the decision to acquit him came after his parents expressed their forgiveness and Waseem submitted a claim that his confession was pressured by police.
Waseem’s mother, Anwar Bibi, expressed her gratitude to the court, saying, “I am thankful to the court, which ordered the release of my son at our request.”
“we are still sad for our daughter’s loss” she added.