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5 indicted over Pakistan weapons programme

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The five men were allegedly running a network that purchased U.S. products for Pakistan's nuclear weapons programme.

Five men have been indicted in the U.S. for allegedly running a network that purchased U.S. products for Pakistan's nuclear weapons programme.

“The defendants smuggled U.S. origin goods to entities that have been designated for years as threats to U.S. national security for their ties to Pakistan’s weapons programs,” assistant attorney general John Demers said. The five, who live outside the U.S., were indicted by a grand jury in October. The indictment was unsealed on Wednesday and arrest warrants are pending.

The five were accused of operating a front company called “Business World” in Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

They were identified as Muhammad Kamran Wali, 41, of Pakistan, Muhammad Ahsan Wali, 48, and Haji Wali Muhammad Sheikh, 82, both of Mississauga, Ontario, Ashraf Khan Muhammad of Hong Kong, and Ahmed Waheed, 52, of Ilford, England.

They were charged with conspiring to violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act and the Export Control Reform Act.

“The alleged behavior of these five individuals presented more than a violation of US export laws,” said Jason Molina, a special agent with the Department of Homeland Security.

“It posed a potential threat to the national security interests of the United States and to the delicate balance of power among nations within the region.”

According to the indictment, between September 2014 and October 2019, the five procured US goods without export licenses for Pakistan's Advanced Engineering Research Organization and the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission.

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Printable version | Jan 28, 2020 9:54:09 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/5-indicted-over-pakistan-weapons-programme/article30578304.ece

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