'Rana sentence a tough message for would-be terrorists'

Jan 19, 2013, 08:29 IST | Agencies

As Pakistan born Tahawwur Hussain Rana (in pic) was sentenced to 14 years in prison for providing material support to Lashkar-e-Taeba, a top US prosecutor said it should send a tough message to would-be terrorists

Although Rana, a boyhood friend of LeT operative David Coleman Headley, was acquitted of a role in the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, he was convicted for supporting LeT in the aborted plot to attack Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten for publishing cartoons of Prophet Muhammad.

Tahawwur Hussain Rana

“This certainly was a dastardly plot,” US District Judge Harry Leinenweber said in imposing the sentence of 14 years in jail followed by five years of supervised release on the Chicago businessman, a naturalised Canadian citizen.

“This serious prison sentence should go a long way towards convincing would-be terrorists that they can’t hide behind the scenes, lend support to the violent aims of terrorist organisations, and escape detection and punishment,” said Gary S Shapiro, Acting United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois.

“Today’s sentence demonstrates that just as vigorously as we pursue terrorists and their organisations, we will also pursue those who facilitate their violent plots from a safe distance. “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,” he said. Rana admitted knowing that LeT was a terrorist organisation and that Headley had attended LeT camps. 

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