US court rejects bail plea of 26/11 mastermind


A US court has rejected the USD 1.5 million bail application of Pakistani-origin Canadian businessman Tahawwur Rana, who has been declared a fugitive by India for his involvement in the 2008 Mumbai terror attack case, describing him a flight risk.

Rana, 59, a childhood friend of David Coleman Headley, was re-arrested on June 10 in Los Angeles on an extradition request by India for his involvement in the 2008 Mumbai terror attack in which 166 people, including six Americans, were killed.

US District Court Judge in Los Angeles Jacqueline Chooljian, in her 24-page order dated July 21, denied bail to Rana, arguing that he is a flight risk. Describing Rana as a flight risk, the US government opposed his release on bail, arguing that if he were to flee to Canada, he may escape the possibility of a death sentence in India.

Granting bail would invite the possibility of embarrassing the United States in the conduct of its foreign affairs, straining its relationship with India, assistant US attorney John J Lulejian had told the court.

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