A Pakistan court on Friday sentenced Mumbai attack mastermind and Lashkar-e-Taiba commander Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi to 15 years in prison in a terror financing case.
Lakhvi was arrested by Pakistani authorities on charges of terror financing on Saturday. He is alleged to have played an important role behind the Mumbai attacks, during which 166 people were killed and many other injured in November 2008.
“The Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) Lahore convicted Lakhvi for commission of offences of terrorism financing in a case registered by the CTD for 15 years under different section of the Anti-Terrorism Act 1997,” a court official was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.
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These arrests come ahead of Financial Action Task Force’s review meeting in February regarding Pakistan inclusion in its ‘grey list’ for misuse of funds for acts of terrorism.
A Pakistan court earlier on Thursday issued an arrest warrant for banned Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) chief Masood Azhar on the charges of terror financing.
Indian government officials familiar with the developments believe that Masood Azhar’s arrest warrant was issued as Pakistan is currently facing pressure from the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), which is monitoring the country for its alleged role in terror financing and money laundering.
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Pakistan was put in FATF’s grey list in 2018 after the global money laundering and terrorist financing watchdog pointed out failing to control terror financing and money laundering. In October, FATF president Marcus Pleyer had warned Pakistan that the nation needs to increase its efforts to control misuse of funds for acts of terrorism. Pleyer had also told the Pakistan government to quickly act on the body’s recommendations, failing which could result the nation entering FATF’s ‘black list.’
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