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US teams share info on Headley with India

Last updated on: December 07, 2009 21:39 IST

A joint team of the US department of justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation briefed Indian investigators on American terror suspect David Headley's alleged role in last year's Mumbai terror strike on Monday.

The team held discussions with the officials of home ministry and the National Investigating Agency, which is probing the role in India of Headley and his accomplice Tahawwur Hussain Rana, a Paksitani-Canadian, both of whom were arrested by the FBI in October this year for plotting terror attacks in India and Denmark.

Besides sharing the interrogation report including his "role" in 26/11 attacks in Mumbai, US Embassy spokesperson Elizabeth Fitzsimmons said in New Delhi that the joint team also briefed the Indian investigators on Headley's alleged role in plotting an attack on a newspaper in Denmark.

"This in fulfillment of President Barack Obama's committment to Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during his recent visit to the US to cooperate closely in the case," the US spokesperson said.

The team, after exchanging the views with their Indian counterparts, will be travelling to Pakistan to meet the authorities in Islamabad.

"We are working with Pakistani officials to follow up on leads regarding Headley's activities and connections in that country," the spokesperson said.

"We have been consulting closely with Pakistani authorities on this case, following the practices developed in previous high-profile counter terrorism investigations," the spokesperson said.

According to sources, the FBI gave some information about Headley and also assured Indian probe agencies that they would share more of it, as the interrogation of the two progressed in the US as well as in Pakistan.

Indian agencies have sought all details of Headley's links with filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt's son Rahul, gym instructor Vilas Varak, some diplomats and business personalities, who were allegedly "misused" by the terror suspect, they said.

Headley and Rana were arrested by the FBI in Chicago in October for allegedly plotting terror strikes in Denmark and India.

However, Rana's advocate had denied the allegations made against his client.

The NIA has already recorded statements of various people, including Varak, during which he told the investigators about the activities of Headley. The US terror suspect had changed his name to Headley from Daood Gilani in 2006 to avoid suspicion.

The probe agency wanted to undertake detailed questioning of Headley and Rana and a team from New Delhi had gone to the US earlier this month. But the Indian probe agencies were denied access to the terror suspects by US authorities because of legal reasons.
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