David Headley provided valuable information to FBI

Washington: David Headley`s "valuable information" to FBI, mapping out LeT`s hierarchy and providing organisational structure of the Pakistan-based terror outfit responsible for the Mumbai attacks, is of interest not only to America but also other countries, according to US prosecutors.

"During the first two weeks that he spent in custody, before he even got a lawyer, David Headley was providing valuable information about terrorists who are of interest not only to the United States but to other governments as well, for very good reasons," Assistant US Attorney Victoria Peters said in her closing arguments during the trial of the Mumbai attack co-accused Tahawwur Rana in a Chicago court.

Headley "mapped out the hierarchy of Lashkar, told the FBI who is in charge, who does what. Zaki(-ur Rehman Lakhvi) is the leader of the military wing. Here he is, sitting with the FBI, giving up the organisational structure of Lashkar-e-Tayyiba, an organisation that is designated by the US as a foreign terrorist organisation," Peters said.

"Here he is sitting with the FBI listing out 34 targets that he believes are still on the radar screen for the Pakistani terrorist organisations," said the US attorney.

She said this intelligence information that Headley provided and that was passed to other governments had great value.

"Not just for us, the United States, but for governments around the world. And don`t forget that Headley`s information had value beyond intelligence value," Peters said, arguing that this is the reason why the US entered into a guilty plea agreement with one the main accused of the Mumbai terrorist attacks.

In exchange for his cooperation, Headley may avoid the death penalty, she said, adding that in light of his cooperation, when Headley is sentenced by Judge Leinenweber, the government is going to recommend that the Judge depart downward from the sentencing guideline range that gives Headley life in prison.

"The plea agreement recognises the value of information that David Headley provided beginning on October 3rd of 2009 when he was arrested," she said.