‘Separate trials would have helped Rana’

Last Updated: Sunday, June 19, 2011 - 13:15

Chicago: Tahawwur Rana, who was cleared of
involvement in Mumbai attacks but convicted in the Denmark
terror plot, would have won the case had there been different
trials for charges against him, the Pakistani-Canadian`s
lawyer has claimed.

"It`s like someone tells you that you have cancer. You
have survived the cancer but have lost a leg. The good news is
that you have survived the cancer," Charlie Swift, Rana`s
attorney, almost two weeks after a Chicago court
delivered its verdict in the case which hit headlines across
the globe.

Describing the ruling as "a mixed bag," Swift said it was
"a disappointment" that Rana, a military doctor-turned
businessman, was convicted on charges relating to the Denmark
plot and aiding Pakistan-based terror outfit LeT.

"I`m not terribly surprised because the jury had to
consider the spectacle of over 160 people being killed (in the
Mumbai attacks)," he said, adding that "had there been two
different trials - one for the Mumbai attacks and another for
Denmark, we would have won."

Swift spoke about the complicated nature of the trial
that dealt with the same conduct on the counts - "support to
terrorism", the question of credibility from star witness
David Headley and lack of evidence on the Mumbai terror
attacks.

50-year-old Rana was acquitted on the Mumbai attack
charge but convicted on relatively lesser charges of the
Denmark plot and giving support to LeT.

After the verdict, Rana was stoic and did not show any
emotion.

"He`s awaiting sentencing post-trial and seeing his
family," Swift said.

"Things are pretty much the same. Dr Rana is optimistic
despite the criminal nature of the case and God has granted
him strength to endure this," he said.

"He knows what he did and is not angry with the jury,"
Swift said.

He also mentioned that everyone in Rana`s family was
generally disappointed with the verdict, but they were
grateful regarding the ruling on the Mumbai terror attack
charge.

"It`s huge for his family," Swift said.
Rana, who has two daughters and a son, faces up to 30
years in jail for the two counts he has been convicted for.

The 12-member jury of the Chicago court found him guilty
of being a part of the conspiracy related to bombing a Danish
newspaper and providing material support to LeT.

Each of the count for which Rana was convicted carries a
maximum sentence of 15 years.

"We would hope the maximum could be 15 years or less
because of the same conduct of his convictions," Swift said.

PTI



First Published: Sunday, June 19, 2011 - 13:15

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