Pakistan jails 'bomber' of French engineers

10th March 2005, Comments 0 comments

KARACHI, March 10 (AFP) - An Islamic militant arrested last week was jailed on Thursday after being sentenced to death in absentia for a 2002 suicide bomb attack which killed 11 French engineers in Pakistan, police said.

KARACHI, March 10 (AFP) - An Islamic militant arrested last week was jailed on Thursday after being sentenced to death in absentia for a 2002 suicide bomb attack which killed 11 French engineers in Pakistan, police said.

Mohammad Sohail had been in police custody since he was arrested on March 2 after falling off a motorbike during a shoot-out with police in the southern port city of Karachi.

He is one of three Sunni Muslim militants sentenced to death in June 2002 for the car bomb blast which killed 11 French naval engineers and three Pakistani bystanders outside Karachi's Sheraton Hotel.

"The court today sent Sohail to jail over Sheraton killings case in which he has already been sentenced to death," police officer Mohammad Tariq said. Sohail, said to be a senior member of a militant group called Harkat Jihad-e-Islami, will also be tried on charges of armed encounter with the police and carrying weapons and explosives, police said.

"He will face another case against him for the encounter, carrying weapons and explosives," Tariq said.

Police have been interrogating Sohail about his role in the 2002 murder of US reporter Daniel Pearl and a failed December 2003 bomb attack on Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf's motorcade.

Pearl disappeared in Karachi in January 2002 while writing about Islamic militancy in Pakistan. A video showing his decapitation was delivered to the US consulate in the city nearly a month later.

Investigators have said Sohail could be the cameraman who made the video of Pearl's slaying.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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