US finds Pakistani scientist guilty

Aafia Siddiqui convicted of shooting at US interrogators while in Afghan detention.

    Siddiqui was charged with seven counts, including attempted murder and assault [AP]

    While the jury exited the court room, Siddiqui yelled: "This is a verdict coming from Israel, not America. Your anger should be directed where it belongs. I can testify to this and I have proof."

    'No evidence'

    Siddiqui grabbed a US warrant officer's rifle while she was detained for questioning in July 2008 in Afghanistan's Ghazni province and fired at FBI agents and military personnel as she was wrestled to the ground.

    None of the US agents or personnel were injured but Siddiqui, who the US government has accused of links with al-Qaeda, was shot.

    Siddiqui was arrested by Afghan police, who said she was carrying containers of chemicals and notes referring to mass-casualty attacks and New York landmarks.

    She was not charged in connection with those materials and the charges she was convicted of do not mention terrorism.

    Instead, the case centred on an incident the next day in the Afghan police compound, where US soldiers and FBI agents sought to question her.

    "She saw her chance to kill Americans and she took it," Christopher LaVigne, the assistant US attorney, told jurors.

    "Not only did she have the motive and intent to harm the United States, she had the know-how to do it."

    Linda Moreno, Siddiqui's defence lawyer, said there was no evidence the rifle had ever been fired, since no bullets, shell casings or bullet debris were recovered and no bullet holes detected.

    Moreno also said the testimony of the government's six eye-witnesses contradicted one another on Siddiqui's location in the 28sq m room, the number of bullets fired and who was present.

    "The government has cast Aafia Siddiqui as some sort of Rambo type," Moreno said.

    "Let's leave behind the fear and talk about what the evidence tells us."

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Meet the deported nurse aiding asylum seekers at US-Mexico border

    Meet the deported nurse helping refugees at the border

    Francisco 'Panchito' Olachea drives a beat-up ambulance around Nogales, taking care of those trying to get to the US.

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    How a homegrown burger joint pioneered a food revolution and decades later gave a young, politicised class its identity.

    'We will cut your throats': The anatomy of Greece's lynch mobs

    The brutality of Greece's racist lynch mobs

    With anti-migrant violence hitting a fever pitch, victims ask why Greek authorities have carried out so few arrests.