New Delhi: Canadian Pakistani businessman Tahawwur Hussain Rana was found guilty of providing material support to the Lashkar-e-Toiba's attack on Mumbai in 2008. But the 12-member jury acquitted him of the more serious charge of direct involvement in the conspiracy leading to the Mumbai attacks.
Rana's Lawyer Charles Swift said, "You cant expect to be excited about the fact he is got 30 years just for buying a plane ticket."
Rana was also found guilty of helping an aborted strike on the Danish newspaper that had published cartoons of Prophet Mohammed. The Jury's unanimous verdict came at the end of two days of deliberations. Rana faces up to 30 years in prison and sentencing is expected soon.
US Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald said, "In my view, we are a long way from David Headley's sentence and I am hoping we have other defendants listed on the indictments starting with Ilyas Kashmiri down and that we are hoping that everyone involved in the plots in Denmark and in Mumbai are brought to justice. And we believe that a measure of justice was taken today, but we are hoping that there will be other people are brought to justice here or overseas. So we are a long way away from his sentencing and our investigation and the prosecution are not done."
The star witness against Rana was his childhood friend David Coleman Headley who turned approver and escaped the death sentence for his direct role in the Mumbai attacks.
The trial exposed the role of the ISI and key Pakistani army officers who remain in hiding somewhere in Pakistan. Headley's testimony had laid bare the ISI hand in planning, coordinating, and supplying weapons for the Mumbai attackers - also the role of Al-Qaeda leader Ilyas Kashmiri.
The focus is now expected to shift to Pakistan where the main conspirators are awaiting trial - a trial that may never happen.