Aaron Mark De Haven
US national Aaron Mark De Haven — Photo by APP

PESHAWAR: A Pakistani court granted bail on Monday to a US citizen said to have been working for a private security company and detained after he outstayed his Pakistani visa, court officials said.

Aaron Mark De Haven was arrested last month from a residential area in the northwestern city of Peshawar, close to the lawless tribal belt near the Afghan border.

“His bail application has been accepted,” additional district and sessions judge Altaf-ur-Rehman said in his order.

An earlier bail plea by De Haven was rejected last week, but the grant of bail came after an appeal and followed a lower court's extension of his judicial remand until March 18.

“The US national has been ordered to submit a surety bond of two million rupees (about $23,500).  His release orders will be issued soon after furnishing the surety bonds,” a court official said.

De Haven has been ordered not to leave the area without informing police until his case is concluded, the official added.

Relations between Pakistan and the United States are already strained over the arrest in late January of a CIA contractor identified as Raymond Davis, who has been charged with murder for shooting dead two men in Lahore.

The United States is demanding his release, insisting that Davis has diplomatic immunity.

Police say De Haven's Pakistani visa had expired in October, and that he was working for security contractor Catalyst Services, providing security and accommodation to foreigners working on development projects in the region.

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