Saturday, May 26, 2012

Dr Afridi jailed for 33 years for helping CIA

A Pakistani doctor accused of helping the American central Intelligence Agency acquire DNA samples of members of Osama bin Laden’s family was convicted on May 23 by a court in tribal area and was sentenced to 33 years in prison for conspiring against sovereignty and state of Pakistan.  
Officials said Dr Shakil Afridi who worked as a government surgeon was also fined Rs320,000 and in case of default he would have to undergo an additional three years imprisonment.
They said Dr Afridi had been tried at the office of assistant political agent (APA) in Bara. He was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment each under section 121 A (conspiracy to wage war against Pakistan or depriving it of its sovereignty), section 123 (concealing existence of a plan to wage war against Pakistan) and 123 A (Condemnation of the creation of the state and advocacy of abolition of its sovereignty) of the Pakistan Penal Code. He was sentenced to an additional three years in jail under section 124 (assaulting president, governor, etc, with intention to compel or restrain the exercise of any lawful power).
The officials said Dr Afridi had been in custody of the Khyber Agency political administration since his arrest, but declined to say where he had been kept and interrogated. Before that the administration never said that the doctor had been in its custody.
“The trial conducted under the Frontier Crimes Regulation continued for one year during which Dr Afridi was denied the right to engage a lawyer,”  Rahat Gul, an administrative official told Pakistan’s Dawn newspaper.
The case was referred to a council of elders constituted under the FCR and headed by the assistant political agent of Bara. In the light of the findings of the council, the APA convicted the agency’s former surgeon.
He was sent to the Peshawar central prison after the conviction.
Dr Afridi was picked up by an intelligence agency in May last year from a checkpoint in Karakhno market when he was returning to Peshawar from Jamrud. Soon after his disappearance, members of his family living in Hayatabad went into hiding.

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