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Investigators find held ‘IS men’ sent funds to Afghanistan

Updated October 20, 2018

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Police have arrested three suspects in kidnapping case. — Photo/File
Police have arrested three suspects in kidnapping case. — Photo/File

KARACHI: Investigators grilling three men held for their alleged connection with the militant Islamic State group found that they had generated funds for the global militant outfit by committing crimes and sent the money to Afghanistan through normal as well as informal banking channels.

Informed sources told Dawn on Friday that the law enforcers recently arrested Naeem, Mukhtiar and Roohullah in the city for their alleged involvement in kidnapping a resident of Gulistan-i-Jauhar.

The resident was released by kidnappers after getting a ransom of over Rs10 million. When he safely reached home, the law enforcers started working on some leads and finally arrested the three suspects.

During investigations, the held suspects had confessed to their involvement in several cases of kidnapping for ransom.

Officials said they had kidnapped and murdered Abid Sohail in September 2017 and buried his body in Manghopir.

In January 2017, the same group had also kidnapped a member of the Ismailia community from Karachi. They shifted him to Hub, Balochistan, in the trunk of their vehicle. However, he managed to escape from their custody. Later, the police had raided their hideout in Hub area and recovered a suicide jacket and explosives.

Police sources said that this group was involved in at least five to six kidnapping-for-ransom cases in the city. They generated funds through this criminal activity and sent the money to the IS head in Afghanistan.

Suspects Roohullah and Mukhtiar were involved in sending money abroad through hundi and hawala. The third suspect, Naeem, was said to be the IS chief in Karachi.

During their interrogation, it transpired that several bank accounts had been opened through which they transferred funds to Afghanistan to carry out acts of terrorism in Pakistan. The sources said that members of this outfit had been involved in terror financing in the metropolis for the past many months.

They claimed that IS had been involved in major terrorism acts in Sindh and Balochistan including the deadly blasts at Sehwan Sharif and Shah Noorani. The sources said that a joint investigation team (JIT) comprising representatives of the State Bank of Pakistan, Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan, law enforcement and intelligence agencies and others had been formed to further grill the suspects.

Published in Dawn, October 20th, 2018