Dhaka: Bangladesh's top court on Tuesday sentenced to death a senior Islamist opposition official for murder during the 1971 liberation war against Pakistan.
Abdul Quader Molla, 65, the fourth-highest leader of the Jamaat-e-Islami party, is the first politician to be found guilty by the country's Supreme Court after it rejected an appeal to acquit him of all charges.
The court, led by chief justice Muzammel Hossain, strengthened the original sentence handed down by the country's controversial war crimes tribunal of life in prison, and imposed the death penalty.
"The court enhanced his life sentence to (the) death penalty," prosecutor Ziad Al Malum told AFP, adding that the order was a four-one majority decision of the Supreme Court.
Defence lawyer Tajul Islam said: "We are stunned by the verdict. This is the first time in South Asian judicial history that a trial court sentence has been enhanced by a supreme court."