Thursday, Sep 29, 2022

Pak Police Says Hafiz Saeed Will Be Arrested 'Very Soon': Report

This news comes a day after the Pakistani authorities booked the Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed for committing multiple offences of terror financing and money laundering.

JuD chief Hafiz Saeed File Photo

Mumbai-attacks mastermind and JuD chief Hafiz Saeed and 12 of his close aides will be arrested "very soon", Pakistan police said on Thursday.

This news comes a day after the Pakistani authorities booked them for committing multiple offences of terror financing and money laundering.

The Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) of Punjab Police on Wednesday registered 23 FIRs against 13 leaders of Jamat-ud-Dawah (JuD) including Saeed on charges of terror financing in different cities of Punjab province after "irrefutable evidence” against them was detected.

"The CTD has booked them and other proscribed organisations on the charges of terror financing. As the FIRs have been registered the suspects will be arrested shortly," Punjab police spokesperson Niyab Haider Naqvi told PTI.

The cases have been registered in Lahore, Gujranwala and Multan for collection of funds for terrorism financing through assets/properties made and held in the names of Trusts/Non-Profit Organisations (NPO) including Al-Anfaal Trust, Dawat ul Irshad Trust, Muaz Bin Jabal Trust, etc.

It further said large scale investigation launched into financing matters of proscribed organisations JuD and Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) in connection with the implementation of UN Sanctions against these Designated Entities and Persons as directed by NSC (National Security Committee) in its meeting of January 1, 2019 chaired by Prime Minister Khan for implementing National Action Plan.

Previously, Naqvi said that the police arrested several members of the banned organisations on terror financing after which they were imprisoned by the anti-terrorism courts.

They have recently been handed down up to five years of imprisonment to 12 members of the JuD and Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) on the charges of terrorism financing.

A source in the Imran Khan government told PTI that the Punjab police are waiting for a go-ahead from the "top" to lay hands on Saeed.

"Saeed is present at his residence in Lahore's Jauhar Town and the police are waiting for a green signal from the government to raid his residence and arrest him," the source said.

The source further said it is likely that Saeed may be arrested this week as the Khan government appears keen to fulfil its obligations on terror financing under the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

Pakistan failed to complete its action plan on terror financing on the FATF's deadline in June last. The FATF warned Islamabad to meet its commitment by another deadline of October or face action, which could possibly lead to the country's blacklisting.

The Paris-based global body is working to curb terrorism financing and money laundering and has asked Pakistan to reassess the operation of banned terrorist outfits in the country.

In June last year, the FATF grey-listed Pakistan on account of its domestic laws being considered weak to tackle the challenges of money laundering and terrorism financing.

Saeed-led JuD is believed to be the front organisation for the Lashkar-e-Taiba which is responsible for carrying out the 2008 Mumbai attacks. The US declared the LeT as a foreign terrorist organisation in June 2014.

The US Department of the Treasury has designated Saeed as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist, and the US, since 2012, has offered a USD 10 million reward for information that brings Saeed to justice.