I-Team

Feds: Chicago terrorists had secondary target

Tuesday, November 03, 2009
Photo from National Defence College, India

Photo from National Defence College, India

There was another target in the crosshairs of a pair of Chicago terror suspects, according to federal agents.

The Chicago men charged with scheming to launch a terrorist attack on a Danish newspaper also discussed an attack on a military college in India, prosecutors stated in court papers filed this afternoon.

The new information surfaced as prosecutors attempted to have a federal judge detain Chicago businessman Tahawwura Hussain Rana without bond. Rana is charged with David Headley in the terrorism case.

The secondary target alleged by authorities, was the National Defence (sic) College in New Delhi.

NDC, as it is known, was chartered in 1960 by Prime Minister Pandit Nehru for "providing instruction to senior service and civil officers in the wider aspects of higher direction and strategy of warfare." According to its Web site, "today, NDC continues to provide future decision-makers with the necessary skills and background for filling senior positions in national security and associated field."

Prosecutors told Magistrate Judge Nan Nolan that the alleged discussion of an attack in India shows that Rana was serious about taking part in terrorism and wasn't merely Headley's dupe as Rana's lawyers contend.

This is the Government's Memorandum in Support of Motion for Detention Pending Trial that was filed this afternoon in United States v. Rana, 09- CR 849 (N.D. Ill.): click here to read memo.

After a brief hearing today, the detention question was continued to 2 p.m. Tuesday Nov. 10, before Magistrate Judge Nolan.

Rana, the owner of a Grundy County goat farm and a Chicago immigration business, allegedly communicated with a person affiliated with the Pakistani group Lashkar-e-Taiba about smuggling in workers to the U.S.

He allegedly e-mailed an associate of Lashkar-e-Taiba last December concerning a "loophole" in American immigration policy. "Whenever you find easy way to come to US immediately think there is a catch to it," Rana wrote, according to authorities. "Only one loophole is business, which they believe is OK and intelligence can play a role."

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