Pakistani-origin Canadian businessman Tahawwur Rana, a key accused in the 2008 Mumbai terror attack, has opposed his extradition to India. He argued that he has previously been acquitted of the offenses for which his extradition is sought.
Rana, 59, has been declared a fugitive by India, where he is facing multiple criminal charges for his involvement in the 2008 Mumbai terror attack in which 166 people, including six Americans, were killed. The extradition hearing, in this case, is continued to 22 April 2021, at 1:30 PM, Magistrate Judge Jacqueline Chooljian, the US District Court of Los Angeles, said in his order dated December 17.
Rana is the childhood friend of David Coleman Headley, 60, an American terrorist of Pakistani origin, and a spy who conspired in plotting the 2008 Mumbai attacks. Headley was made an approver in the case and is currently serving a 35-year prison term in the US for his role in the attack.
“This is the rarest of cases: the government seeks to extradite Tahawwur Rana to India to face the death penalty based on alleged criminal conduct for which an American jury acquitted him,” Rana’s attorneys said.
“The US government seeks to accomplish this inequitable result by reading… double jeopardy, provision of the extradition treaty contrary to its text, to international and Indian law, to the interpretation the government gave that provision in its plea agreement with Rana’s alleged co-conspirator, David Headley, and even to the United States double jeopardy principles,” they said.
Rana was previously prosecuted in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. He was charged with conspiring to provide material support to terrorism in India.
The US government, which is supporting his extradition, expected to file its motion soon.