Osama widows, daughters send to jail for 45 days

Islamabad: Slain al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden`s three widows and two daughters were today sentenced to 45 days in prison and fined Rs 10,000 each for illegally entering and living in Pakistan by a court here, which also ordered their deportation after completion of their jail terms. The trial of the women was conducted in a house in Islamabad where members of bin Laden`s family are currently being held. Authorities have declared the house a sub-jail.

Besides handing down the sentence of 45 days to bin Laden`s three widows and two daughters, civil judge Shahrukh Arjumand ordered them to pay a fine of Rs 10,000 each, a lawyer defending the women told the media. The lawyer said the fines had already been paid. The judge further directed authorities to arrange the deportation of the women after they had completed their jail terms.

The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) had filed a case against bin Laden`s three widows — two of them Saudi nationals and third a Yemeni — last month under the Foreigners Act and Pakistan Penal Code for illegally entering and living in the country. Under Pakistani law, the maximum sentence for illegally entering and living in the country is five years. Bin Laden`s family members were detained by Pakistani security agencies after US special forces killed the al-Qaeda chief at a compound in the garrison town of Abbottabad on May 2 last year.

His Yemeni widow Amal Abdulfattah has told Pakistani investigators that the al-Qaeda chief lived in Pakistan since 2002, criss-crossing the country`s northwest before moving to the compound in Abbottabad where he was killed. Bin Laden moved between five safe houses over a period of nine years. He also fathered four children in Pakistan, including two who were born in a state-run hospital in a town close to Islamabad, Abdulfattah told the investigators.