The verdict of a Chicago court jury to acquit Pakistani-Canadian Tahawwur Rana from charges that he was involved in the Mumbai terror attacks is disappointing, a top U.S. government attorney said on Friday.
“We are disappointed in the not guilty verdict on the Mumbai attacks,” U.S. Attorney Patrick J Fitzgerald said after a Chicago jury gave its verdict on Rana case.
At the same time, the jury found Rana guilty on the other two counts of charges that he was involved in plotting a terror attack in Denmark and provided material support to Pakistan-based terror group LeT.
“We are gratified by the guilty verdict of providing material support for the Lashkar. And we are gratified by the guilty verdict to provide material support to the conspiracy in Denmark,” the U.S. attorney said.
“I do not know, the government had the burden of proof,” he said when asked what went wrong on the 26/11 charges that killed more than 160 people.
“We put our evidence forward and the jury found that we did not meet the burden (of proof) there. But they did find we made our burden proving material support to Lashkar and they found that we met our burden with regard to attack on Denmark,” Mr. Fitzgerald said.
Responding to a question, the US attorney said that he understands that Rana was acquitted on a very serious charge related to the Mumbai terrorist attack.
“What we are saying is that we embrace jury’s verdict and where the jury disagrees with us, we accept that. However, what they did convict him for was very serious given that he was supporting Lashkar’s activities in India is very serious and supporting a plot in Denmark is very serious. No doubt that he was acquitted of serious conduct and is convicted of very serious conduct. We are not going to say, we got everything we wanted,” he noted.