Pak anti-terrorism court adjourns hearing into US 'jihad seekers' case

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Islamabad, Mar.11 (ANI): The framing of charges against the five young US students arrested last year for their links with Al-Qaeda, has been deferred once again as the anti-terrorism court hearing the case has adjourned it till March 17.

The Sargodha anti-terrorism court also rejected the bail plea of the 'jihad seekers' due to the lack of proper document.

"Charges could not be framed against the accused today, because some documents were needed which were not annexed with the charge sheet filed by the police earlier," The Dawn quoted public prosecutor, Naveed Akram Cheema, as saying.

The men, aged between 18 and 25, face life imprisonment if found guilty.

The newspaper reported that a US diplomat visited the court before the trial began and left before the hearing started, but did not responded to media queries.

Pakistani officials say the men planned to travel to Afghanistan to fight with the Taliban against US troops. They have denied the charges of having links with the Al-Qaeda, saying wanted to go to Afghanistan for charity work.

The five accused, who were arrested on charges of ties with terror groups linked with the Al-Qaeda, had pleaded innocence, and said that they were being 'set up' and tortured by the FBI and the Pakistani police.

Waqar Hussain Khan (22), Virginia, Ahmed Abdullah Mani (20), Virginia, Ramay S Zamzam (22), Iman Hasan Yamar (17), California and Omar Farouk (24), Virginia, were arrested in Sargodha on December 9, 2009 for "plotting terror attacks in Pakistan and Afghansitan, and are locked in a Pakistani jail without being charged.

Pakistan has made it clear that the men would not be deported to the US and that they would be prosecuted in the country itself. (ANI)

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