The Biden administration has prompted a federal court to authenticate India’s request for extradition of Tahawwur Rana. The Pakistani-origin Canadian businessman is foraged for his involvement in the Mumbai terror attack which turned out to be fatal for 166 people including six Americans.
Assistant U.S. Attorney John J. Lulejian submitted in a Los Angeles federal court,
“The United States respectfully requests that following the April 22, 2021, extradition hearing, the Court certify India’s request for Rana’s extradition for the Secretary of State’s surrender decision”.
Lulejian further stated that this case satisfies all the conditions required to authorize extradition which are:
(i) That the court has both personal and subject matter jurisdiction,
(ii) There exists a functional and effective extradition treaty between U.S and India and
(iii) The crimes for which extradition is sought are covered within the treaty.
“Fugitive Tahawwur Hussain Rana is wanted in India to stand trial for offences related to his role in the 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India, that resulted in the death of 166 people, the injury of 239 people and the damage to property in excess of $1.5billion”.
The 59-year-old fugitive was arrested in Los Angeles after the U.S. initiated the extradition proceedings on India’s request.
India’s extradition request includes evidence which establishes probable cause that the individual appearing in the court is the same fugitive who was involved in the Mumbai terror attacks for which extradition is sought.
Rana’s attorney had previously argued that Rana’s extradition is barred under Article 6 and Article 9 of the United States-India extradition treaty.
Under Article 6, Rana’s extradition is barred because he was previously acquitted of the offences for which extradition is requested. Further, the government’s failure to establish probable cause for Rana’s involvement is the reason for prohibiting extradition under Article 9.
Mr. Lulejian argued that Rana’s extradition is not barred under Article 6 and stated,
“Rana has failed to demonstrate that he cannot be extradited to India as a result of his prior prosecution in the United States”.
John also maintained that his claim against his extradition should not be permitted in absence of probable cause is merely a failed attempt to discredit a key witness against him. Further, he fails to challenge India’s allegation against him.
Mr. Lulejian also established that Rana could not benefit from his childhood friend, David Coleman Headley’s plea because he neither pleaded guilty nor cooperated with the United States.
Rana’s extradition proceedings are different from Headley’s criminal proceedings which establish that Rana has no rights under Headley’s plea agreement and is forbidden from using it for undermining the United States’ position under the treaty.
David Coleman is a Pakistani-American LeT terrorist who has been convicted in his involvement in the attacks and is presently serving a 35-year prison term in the U.S.