Former Pakistan President and military ruler Pervez Musharraf has been sentenced to death in absentia for high treason.
He was convicted on Tuesday (Dec 17) by a three-member special court in Islamabad for violating the constitution by unlawfully declaring emergency rule while he was in power.
The 76-year-old Musharraf has lived in self-imposed exile in Dubai for three years.
Musharraf seized power in a military coup in 1999 and was Pakistan’s president until 2008. In 2014, he was indicted on five charges, including three counts of subverting, suspending and changing the country’s constitution, firing Pakistan’s chief justice, and imposing emergency rule.
This is the first time in Pakistan’s history that an army chief has been tried and found guilty of treason. Under Pakistan’s constitution, high treason is a crime that carries the death penalty or life imprisonment. The special court ruled on the death sentence by a two to one majority.
Musharraf has the option to appeal the verdict.