Sentenced: Pak expat gets 14 years for helping LeT

Also found guilty of conspiring to help killing the man who drew cartoon of Holy Prophet.

Huma Imtiaz January 18, 2013
A courtroom artist's sketch shows Tahawwur Rana (L) looking on with his lawyer Patrick Blegen during a sentencing hearing in federal court in Chicago, Illinois January 17, 2013. PHOTO: REUTERS


A Chicago judge sentenced Tahawwur Rana, a man of Pakistani origin, to 14 years of jail for providing material support to Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT).

Rana was also convicted for conspiracy to provide material support in a plot to carry out a terrorist attack on the office of Jyllands-Posten, a Denmark newspaper that had published cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).

The sentencing was announced by US District Judge Henry Leinenweber, and includes an additional five years of supervised release.

A jury had convicted Rana, a friend of David Coleman Headley who has pleaded guilty to plotting the 26/11 attacks in Mumbai, in June 2011.

Rana had been acquitted of providing support to the Mumbai attacks’ plot.

According to a statement issued by the US Attorney’s office in Chicago, the judge said, “This certainly was a dastardly plot.”

The statement said that Rana had been convicted of conspiracy to “provide material support to a plot from October 2008 to October 2009 to commit murder in Denmark, including a horrific plan to behead employees of Morgenavisen Jyllands-Posten, a Danish newspaper, and throw their heads on to the street in Copenhagen, as well as providing material support, from late 2005 to October 2009, to Lashkar, a militant organisation operating in Pakistan.”

Lisa Monaco, the Assistant Attorney General for National Security, said in the statement, “As established at trial, Tahawwur Rana provided critical support to David Headley and other terrorists from his base in the United States, knowing they were plotting attacks overseas.”

Rana, who was childhood friends with Headley and attended the Hasan Abdal Cadet College with him, moved to Canada after refusing to go back to duty as a doctor for the Pakistan Army, following which, he settled in Chicago with his family. Throughout the trial, Rana’s wife and daughter attended the hearings, and heard as Rana was accused of, amongst other things, comparing LeT leader Sajid Mir to Khalid Bin Waleed, and calling the 26/11 attacks “tactically brilliant.” Rana ran an immigration office in Chicago, and was arrested in October 2009 along with David Headley.

The statement said that Rana had admitted to knowing that LeT was a terrorist organisation, and that David Headley had attended LeT’s training camps in Pakistan.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 18th, 2013.


Super Star | 10 years ago | Reply

All terror leads to Pakistan

Rashid | 10 years ago | Reply

All road leads to Rome.

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