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Entries in Intelligence Agency (5)

Tuesday
Jul192011

Alleged Pakistani Agents Charged in U.S. Lobbying Scheme

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The Pakistani government, including its notorious intelligence agency, used unregistered agents on U.S. soil to funnel millions of dollars and illegally influenced the U.S. government, the Justice Department said Tuesday.

Syed Ghulam Nabi Fai, an American citizen, was arrested Tuesday morning in Virginia by the FBI and charged with moving money that came from Pakistan through an organization he headed in Washington called the Kashmiri American Council (KAC).

Another man, Zaheer Ahmed, was also charged in the one-count criminal complaint with being an unregistered foreign agent. Zaheer allegedly served as the conduit for the funds to be transferred to Fai which came from about 10 straw donors. Ahmed, a U.S. citizen, is currently believed to be living in Pakistan.

According to a Federal Elections Commission records search, Fai donated $23,500 to political candidates from both parties. Going back to 1997, Fai donated $9,500 to the National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee, $7,500 to Rep. Dan Burton (R-Ind.), $1,000 to Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.), $500 to Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio), $250 to the Obama campaign and $250 to Al Gore.

Under U.S. law individuals who work or represent the interests of foreign governments are required to register their status as foreign agents with the Attorney General. According to federal investigators, Fai's funds -- about $500,000 a year -- came directly from the government of Pakistan.

Burton has been a vocal member in Congress in support of free elections in Kashmir and has criticized the Indian government for their claims there. He told ABC News he had "no inkling" that Fai was involved with any foreign intelligence operation, as the U.S. government alleges, despite knowing him for 20 years.

Representatives for Moran declined to comment for this report, and Kucinich's office did not immediately reply for requests for comment.

According to Justice Department officials, the men were only interested in lobbying and were not trying to obtain sensitive information and, therefore, have not been charged with espionage.

The FBI became alerted to the men's activities through the use of two confidential witnesses who provided information the FBI about the men's operations. According to the FBI affidavit, one of the witnesses told investigators that Fai received instructions and tasking orders from Pakistani intelligence through a retired Brigadier General named Javeed Aziz Khan.

The FBI affidavit notes that Khan had emailed Fai in April 9, 2009, in an effort to make Secretary of State Hillary Clinton make a statement about Kashmir.

An attorney for Mr. Fai could not be located on Tuesday. If convicted, he faces a maximum of five years in prison.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jul132011

Pakistani Intelligence Chief Heads to US

Photos [dot] com/George Doyle/ Thinkstock(ISLAMABAD) -- Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha, the head of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) -- Pakistan's top intelligence agency -- left for the U.S. on Wednesday for a one-day visit with his American counterpart to discuss intelligence matters.

Relations between the two countries have been strained since U.S. Navy SEALs raided Osama bin Laden's compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan back in May and killed the al Qaeda leader.

Pakistan has asked the U.S. to reduce its military presence in the country and has restricted visas to its officials. The U.S., on the other hand, recently announced it was suspending aid to Pakistan after bringing to light evidence some in the ISI were tipping off terrorists before raids. In turn, Pakistani representatives threatened to pull its troops from the lawless border with Afghanistan where Al Qeada operatives have found refuge.

A military official said the purpose of Pasha's visit "is to bring the relationship back on track" and to "ease the tensions between the U.S. and Pakistan."

The ISI chief is also expected to discuss future intelligence cooperation.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
May112011

US Eager to Interrogate Bin Laden's Widows

CNN via Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Pakistan is still resisting attempts by U.S. intelligence to interview the three widows of Osama bin Laden who were staying with the al Qaeda leader during the raid on his compound by Navy SEALs on May 1.

While the White House had demanded access to the three women, Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence agency won't even permit American officials to study their interrogation reports of the widows.

A Pakistani security official, familiar with the situation, says the three wives were likely sequestered with bin Laden at the compound in Abbottabad for years.  It's also been reported that there were as many as 13 children there, including eight children of bin Laden, one of who was killed during the operation.

But even as Pakistan's ISI seems reluctant to share any information, U.S. officials have doubts that the widows will be able to shed much light on what their late husband might have been planning in terms of future al Qaeda plots against the U.S. or other foreign interests.

If bin Laden followed strict Islamic code, the women would have been cloistered and not allowed to speak with men outside their family.  It's also doubtful that his widows were privy to bin Laden's business or operational dealings.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
May102011

Pakistani Media 'Outs' CIA Station Chief in Islamabad

CIA [dot] gov(ISLAMABAD) -- In its haste to get back at the U.S. for not providing advance word about the raid on Osama bin Laden's compound, a Pakistani TV network apparently divulged the identity of the CIA's current station chief in Islamabad, which was followed by the publication of the name in a right-wing newspaper.

The CIA station chief is a vital intelligence post because that person helps to coordinate the unmanned drone attacks against suspected militants hiding out in Pakistan's shared border with Afghanistan.  It's also believed the operative had prior knowledge of the operation in Abbottabad that killed bin Laden.

Asked about the matter, the private ARY TV's news director said he did not press the reporter about who the source of his information was "because I have confidence in him."

However, it's assumed that someone within Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence agency was the likely source.  A U.S. official speaking on the condition of anonymity said, "We suspect it's retaliation.  That's certainly one of the most plausible explanations for it."

This would be the second time in the past six months that the identity of the CIA station chief in Islamabad was made public.  Last December, an official with those duties was recalled back to the U.S.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Dec282010

Iran Hangs Man Convicted of Spying for Israel's Mossad

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(TEHRAN, Iran) -- Iranian officials announced Tuesday they have hanged a convicted Iranian spy for Israel.

Iran's state news agency says authorities at Tehran's Evin prison have hanged Ali Akbar Siadat, a man convicted of spying for Israel's intelligence agency, the Mossad, from 2004 until 2008.

Iran's state report says Siadat confessed to giving Israeli agents classified information on Iranian military maneuvers, bases and missile capabilities in exchange for over $60,000.

Details on Siadat's arrest, the evidence against him and his trial were never made public, which has led some analysts in Israel to question the charges.  Officials in Jerusalem are not commenting on the report.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio







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