Headley: Undercover agent who turned rogue?
The David Headley story is getting murkier as reports now claim that he might be an US undercover agent.
New Delhi: The David Headley story is getting murkier by the day. Reports claimed on Friday that investigators in India are waking up to an enticing possibility that Headley may have been a US undercover agent who just turned rogue!
As per the report published in a leading daily, David Coleman Headley aka Daood Gilani was probably used by the US intelligence to infiltrate the Lashar-E-Toiba. In many ways, he was fit for the job owing to his Pakistani lineage. With one green and one brown eye, Headley was really the perfect fit.
Although, this is supposed to be just a theory at the moment, but the fact remains that the US authorities have been trying to keep Headley away from Indian investigators. They even went as far as Washington to grill Headley but were refused permission.
The report further claims that Headley may have been the one who provided American sleuths the information that prevented a Lashkar attack on Mumbai in September 2008.
Then, under increasing influence of the radical elements, he later committed fully to Lashkar, which could be one reason why American agencies were caught napping by 26/11 attacks in Mumbai.
The genesis of the Headley’s tryst with US intelligence was recently revelead in a NY Times report which said in 1998, Headley was convicted of conspiring to smuggle heroin into US from Pakistan. The New York Times report says, “Court records show that after his arrest, he provided so much information about his own involvement with drug trafficking which stretched back more than a decade and about his Pakistani suppliers that he was sentenced to less than two years in jail and later went to Pakistan to conduct undercover surveillance operations for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).”
The report clearly suggests that Headley may have been allowed to get away for his drug crime in lieu of a promise of cooperation.
But the twist in the story lies in the change in Headley following close interaction with the Lashkar ideologues. A one time asset did not take too much time to turn into a liability. By his own confession, he joined LeT in 2006 and received training in one of the terror camps run by the jihadi outfit.