Rusty at My Pet Jawa has been expecting this, but for many it may come as a shock. The Department of Justice has unsealed an indictment against an American on charges of conspiracy and terrorism related to the Mumbai massacre a year ago. David Headley spent time at terrorist training camps in Pakistan and then helped surveil Mumbai for the best targets of the terrorist attack:
New federal charges filed today allege that a Chicago man, who was arrested in October for planning terrorist attacks against a Danish newspaper and two of its employees, also conducted extensive surveillance of targets in Mumbai for more than two years preceding the November 2008 terrorist attack on India’s largest city that killed approximately 170 people, including six Americans, and injured hundreds more.
The defendant, David Coleman Headley, a U.S. citizen, earlier this decade allegedly attended terrorism training camps in Pakistan maintained by Lashkar e Tayyiba (Lashkar), and conspired with its members and others in planning and executing the attacks in both Denmark and India, federal law enforcement officials announced today.
Also today, a criminal complaint was unsealed in federal court in Chicago charging Abdur Rehman Hashim Syed (Abdur Rehman), a retired major in the Pakistani military, with conspiracy in planning to attack the Danish newspaper and its employees. Another Chicago man, Tahawwur Hussain Rana, a Canadian citizen and native of Pakistan, was arrested in October on federal charges filed in Chicago relating to the Danish terrorism plot.
Through his attorneys, Headley has authorized the Justice Department to disclose that he is cooperating in the ongoing investigation of both the Danish and Indian terror plots. He has remained in federal custody without bond since he was arrested in Chicago on Oct. 3, 2009. No date has been set yet for his arraignment in U.S. District Court in Chicago.
Headley, 49, was charged in a 12-count criminal information with six counts of conspiracy to bomb public places in India, to murder and maim persons in India and Denmark, to provide material support to foreign terrorist plots, and to provide material support to Lashkar, and six counts of aiding and abetting the murder of U.S. citizens in India.
Headley is cooperating? That seems interesting. I wonder how many other Americans might be involved in this attack, if any.
Rusty lays it out:
Think about that. An American involved in international terrorism abroad. That’s a big deal and a far cry from our template of what the usual suspects would look like.
Also, lest our neighbors in the Great White North feel left out there’s a Canada connection too. Headley’s accomplice — the man who’s business Headley used as a front to conduct his terrorist surveillance activities abroad — is named Tahawar Rana and is a Canadian citizen.
The business which was really a front for terrorism? An immigration service that helped foreigners get US work visas.
Think about the implications of that.
Indeed. Keep checking back with Rusty for more developments.