David Coleman Headley Pleads Guilty
David Coleman Headley (49) has pleaded guilty to scouting targets for the audacious 26/11 Mumbai terror strikes that left over 170, including several foreigners, dead, say media reports.
A US citizen, Headley, at his trial in Chicago, also admitted plotting an attack on a Danish newspaper that published a cartoon deemed offensive by Muslims.
He had earlier denied the charges but changed his plea, admitting 12 counts of conspiracy, to dodge a death penalty or extradition to India, Pakistan or Denmark.
Foreign investigators, however, may still be able to investigate Headley in the US.
“Not only has the criminal justice system achieved a guilty plea in this case, but David Headley is now providing us valuable intelligence about terrorist activities,” US Attorney General Eric Holder wzs reported as saying in a statement.
Headley had made several surveillance trips to India and Denmark and passed on the information to his contacts with the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), the outfit blamed for the Mumbai attacks.
Headley, who was arrested by FBI agents in Chicago in October while trying to board a plane for Philadelphia, is alleged to have told prosecutors that he had been working with LeT since 2002.
Headley changed his name from Daood Gilani in 2006.
WHO IS DAVID COLEMAN HEADLEY
• Born in 1960 to a Pakistani father and an American mother in the US
• Spent much of his childhood in Pakistan
• Attended a military boarding school in Islamabad
• Dropped out of school at 17
• Joined his mother in the US after she divorced his father
• Changed his name to David Headley in 2006
• Made five extended trips to Mumbai between 2006 and 2008
• FBI says he took pictures and made videotapes of various targets, including those attacked in the macabre 26/11 strikes in 2008
• Arrested in Chicago on 3 October 2009 as he was about to travel to Pakistan
Based on Media Reports