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Tahawwur Rana's lawyer preparing for February trial

December 07, 2010 03:00 IST

The lawyer of Pakistani-Canadian Tahawwur Rana, co-accused with Lashkar-e-Tayiba operative David Headley in the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, on Monday informed a federal court in Chicago that he was preparing for his client's February trial.

Rana's lawyer Patrick W Blegen told US District Court Judge Harry Leinenweber that he was preparing for the trial and currently working on translating Rana's transcripts.

"We're working with the translators. Some of the tapes are very lengthy," Blegen said. The court hearing was originally scheduled for December 2 but was moved to December 6.

Clad in an orange jumpsuit and white sneakers, 49-year-old Rana, with a grey hair and beard, wore silver-rimmed glasses as Leinenweber heard the team of lawyers in the court room at the Dirksen Federal Courthouse.

Blegen requested the judge for another hearing on Classified Information Procedures Act-related issues, which will deal with classified evidence that Blegen is trying to use.

Starting January 14 next year, the government will file a pre-trial document that sets forth some of the government's evidence to help what the government is trying to prove.

A week later on January 21, both the government and defence will have pre-trial motions about what evidence they should be allowed to use or not use at the trial.

On January 28, both sides will be able to respond to each other in writing on what they each filed and Leinenweber will then make rulings and decide on Rana's fate on February 14, the date of the trial.

Rana was indicted by a federal grand jury on February 15 this year, and has pleaded not guilty, while Headley had pleaded guilty in March to plotting the Mumbai carnage.

Rana was accused with Pakistani-American Headley in a 12-count superseding indictment for plotting the 26/11 attacks and providing material support to LeT to carry out the attacks that killed 166 people, including six Americans.

He is also accused for plotting an attack on a Danish newspaper which published cartoons of Prophet.

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