Attempt made to kill Bal Thackeray, assailant escaped: Headley

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Mumbai, Mar. 24 (ANI): 26/11 Mumbai Terror attack operative David Coleman Headley, whose cross examination in the case continued today, admitted that a plot had been executed to kill Shiv Sena Chief Bal Thackeray but he managed to escape unharmed, adding that the assailant had been arrested but escaped from custody later.

Here are some of the top developments in the cross examination so far.

1. Headley says he gave no incorrect information before the US passport authorities to get his name changed in the passport.

2. There is no prohibition on a convict to travel abroad once he undergoes his sentence as per US laws, no matter what the conviction is: Headley

3. I am giving this witness in this court according to the clauses of my plea bargaining agreement and not as per US witness protection programme: Headley

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4. I will not benefit according to US witness protection programme by giving testimony to this court: Headley

5. I have pleaded before this court for pardon: Headley

6. I don’t have firsthand knowledge but an attempt was made to kill Bal Thackeray by LeT: Headley

7. I visited the Sena Bhavan twice on instructions of my supervisor Sajid Mir. The target was to kill the Shiv Sena Chief: Headley

8. Attack was attempted on Bal Thackeray, but he was unharmed. The assailant was arrested but fled from custody later on: Headley

Yesterday in his cross examination, Headley accepted that he had funded Rs. 80 lakh to terror outfit Lashkar e Taiba (LeT), adding that he did not know the purpose of the money.

“David Headley, the approver in 26/11 case, has been cross-examined today by the Attorney of Abu Jundal’s lawyer. He has admitted three important facts. Firstly, he admitted that he has donated 80 lakhs Pakistani rupees to Laskar-e-Toiba. However, he claimed that he was not knowing exactly as to where that money was used and for what purpose,” Nikam told the media here.

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“Secondly, he has admitted that he has invested his money in Dubai as well as in Pakistan. He further admitted before the arrest by the FBI in the terror attacks of November 26, he was working as a drug peddler and he was convicted by American court for two times but he was released on the probation on certain grounds,” he added.

Nikam further stated the criminal antecedents of Headley were brought on record by the defence, adding it would be helpful to the prosecution case.

Headley also revealed that Tahawwur Rana, his associate and a Pakistani native, who operated an immigration business in Chicago, was aware that he was an operative of the terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT).

Headley’s cross examination began at the Mumbai sessions court yesterday.

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Abdul Wahab Khan, the lawyer of Sayed Zabiuddin Ansari alias Abu Jundal who is one of the prime accused in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, is cross-examining Headley in the presence of Nikam.

More details to follow. (ANI)

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