News Desk: The Pakistan origin Canadian, Tahawwur Hussain Rana was arrested from the US. Rana, who was sent to US jail for his role in planning the 2008 Mumbai attacks, has been arrested after being freed from prison to face extradition to India.
Rana(aged 59) is a close associate of David Coleman Headley- one of the main conspirators behind the attacks on Mumbai, India’s financial hub that killed 166 people. Rana was serving a 14-year sentence in a Los Angeles federal prison. He was granted an early release last week because of poor health and infected by COVID-19. However, he never got out of prison, he was arrested to face extradition to India.
According to court documents, he has been charged with murder and murder conspiracy in India. Earlier Rana was convicted in Chicago in 2011 for providing material support to the Pakistan based terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba. The terrorist group planned the India attack.
He was also charged for supporting a never carried out plot to attack a Danish newspaper. The Danish newspaper printed cartoons of Prophet Muhammad in 2005 which angered many Muslims because pictures of the prophet are prohibited in Islam. Jurors cleared Rana of few more serious charges of providing support for the attacks in Mumbai. India’s financial hub faced damage of 15 Billion, 166 Killed and nearly 240 people were injured.
Rana’s lawyer said that Rana has been deceived by his high school friend David Coleman Headley, the American terrorist of Pakistan origin and an admitted terrorist who plotted the Mumbai attacks.
Rana was accused of allowing Headley to open a branch of his Chicago based immigration law business in Mumbai.
A senior National Investigation Agency(NIA) officer told that Rana’s extradition will be a positive development after 11 years of the Mumbai incident.
In late 2018, an NIA team visited the US, they were informed by the Department of Justice(DoJ) that they were convinced with India’s charges against Rana. Since Rana is sentenced to a 14-year jail term in the US, the Department of Justice, however, raised the question of double jeopardy. They wanted to know from the NIA whether sentencing Rana twice would not lead to ‘double jeopardy’.
So far, no Indian Agency has questioned Tahawwur Rana due to many legal complications.
According to sources, as per Headley’s deal with the US, he cannot be extradited to India or Denmark and neither can be awarded a death sentence. Headley is currently serving 35 years of imprisonment.
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