Foreign govt can quiz Headley on US soil

Posted By: Staff
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Washington, Mar 19: At the backdrop of his non-extradition to India, Pakistan and Denmark, David Coleman Headley, accused for conspiring terror attacks in India and on a Danish newspaper, has agreed to make himself available to foreign governments for interrogation in the US soil.

Earlier on Mar 18, Headley pleaded guilty to all the 12 counts of terror charges against him as per the guilty plea agreement which he had entered into with the prosecutors.

Under the agreement, he cannot be extradited to India, Pakistan and Denmark if he is convicted or pleads guilty to all terror charges. The Federal prosecutors have also ruled out death penalty against him following his admittance to all the charges.

"Headley has agreed to not only continue his cooperation with the government, which he has been doing since October, but also to make himself available for interviews by other governments in this country. As part of his agreement, he has agreed to allow himself to be interviewed by foreign governments in this country," Headley"s attorney John Theis told reporters after the hearing.

Asked whether it meant that the Indian investigators could come to US and interrogate Headley, Theis said that Headley was obliged to respond to the interrogation under the agreement.

“Yes. If he refuses to talk to foreign governments here, it would mean a violation of the plea agreement“.

According to the plea agreement, 'Headley must fully and truthfully participate in any debriefings for the purpose of gathering intelligence or national security information,' whenever he is directed by the US Attorney"s Office.

Headley had agreed to fully and truthfully testify in any foreign judicial proceedings held in the US by way of deposition, or video-conferencing, whenever he is directed by the Court.

Thies said that the Headley's confession is a 'manifestation, one example of his regret and his remorse. His conduct contributed to the harm of many people'.

The goverment has claimed of cooperation from the Headley since he was arrested on Oct 3, 2009. Headley has provided vital information regarding intelligence on other matters.

Thies said that all information provided by Headley has been shared with India and Denmark.

Headley's lawyer, Robert Seeder said that though Headley was informed that he had the right to remain silent and to seek consul and anything he said could and would be used against, he chose to provide complete information on the matter.

"He chose not to exercise those rights and in fact to provide timely, thorough, trustworthy and complete information," his lawyer Robert Seeder added.

Thies said that Headley's cooperation has significantly helped the United States and has also aided other countries".

"His cooperation has potentially saved the lives of hundreds, if not thousands, of people and his cooperation is going to continue throughout the remainder of this case," Mr. Theis said, adding Headley was never involved in any kind of plot involving U.S. soil or U.S. citizens, “not knowingly“.

On the Headley's sentencing, Theis said that it could range from life sentence or any other sentence less than that as authorised by law.

"It is obviously a complicated case. Sentencing is up to the Judge. This case has a long way to go," he added.

OneIndia News

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