Ready to turn approver if given pardon in 26/11 case, Headley tells court

Ready to turn approver if given pardon in 26/11 case, Headley tells court

Ready to turn approver if given pardon in 26/11 case, Headley tells court

David Coleman Headley, the Pakistani -American LeT terrorist serving prison sentence in the US, today told a court here that he was ready to depose and turn approver in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack trial if he was given pardon.

Headley appeared before the sessions court here through a video link from an undisclosed location in the US. Ujjwal Nikam, the special public prosecutor, told the judge G A Sanap that Headley was ready to turn "approver" if given pardon.

As Nikam sought some time to consult the investigating officers, the court adjourned the proceedings for half an hour this evening.

"I have received the charging document filed against me in this court. It charges me with same conduct for which I was charged in the US. I had pleaded guilty to the charges in the US and I admitted that I was participant in these charges," Headley told the court.

"I accepted responsibility for my role in those offences in my plea agreement (in US). I also agreed to make myself available as a witness in this court. I appear here ready to answer questions regarding these events if I receive a pardon from this court," he said.

At this point, Nikam said that Headley had proposed to become an approver provided he was given pardon.

The prosecutor then requested the judge to adjourn the hearing for half an hour, so that he could consult the investigating officers about Headley's offer.

Earlier, the judge explained to Headley the charges against him.

On November 18, the court had said that Headley must be produced through video conference on December 10 as it allowed the Mumbai police's plea to make him an accused.

Headley is currently serving 35 years in an American prison for his role in the Mumbai terror attacks.

The police had said he should be tried by the Mumbai court along with the key conspirator Sayed Zabiuddin Ansari alias Abu Jundal.

Following this, the court took `cognisance of offences' against Headley.

The offences with which Headley is likely to be charged by Mumbai court are distinct and separate than the offences with which he had been charged and punished in the US, the police had said then.

The police's application also noted that Headley entered into a plea bargain agreement with US authorities in 2010, and thereby willingly and voluntarily agreed that he was part of the conspiracy behind the November 26, 2008 attacks in Mumbai which claimed 166 lives. 

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