British-born terrorist Omar Saeed Sheikh's death sentence has been overturned by a Pakistan court on April 2. According to reports, the death sentence of Omar Sheikh was commuted to seven years in prison by the Sindh High court. Omar Sheikh was convicted for the murder of an American journalist Daniel Pearl, who was abducted and killed in Pakistan in 2002. The Wall Street Journal reporter was in Pakistan researching a story about the September 11 attacks.
According to reports, Pearl was abducted from Pakistan's Karachi city and his decapitated body was later found in a grave on the outskirts of the city. Video footage of the decapitation was sent to the US consulate a month later in which Pearl was forced to say that he was a Jewish before his throat was slitted. Omar Sheikh was one of the main convicts in the case, who was sentenced to death by a Pakistani anti-terrorism court in 2002.
Omar Sheikh's lawyer while talking to the press reportedly said that his client is expected to be released soon since he has already served 18 years in prison. The court had not yet issued any order related to Sheikh's release, the lawyer informed. Sheikh first came into limelight when in 1994 he kidnapped foreign nationals in India and was arrested by the Indian law enforcement agencies following that. Sheikh was freed by India along with Jaish-e-Mohammed founder Masood Azhar and terrorist Mushtaq Ahmad Zargar in exchange for the passengers of the Indian Airlines flight IC-814 that was hijacked by a Pakistan based terrorist group in 1999.
It is believed that Sheikh in the aftermath of the 2008 Mumbai attacks called the then President of Pakistan Asif Ali Zardari pretending to be the then Indian Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee and threatened with war. He also tried calling the real Pranab Mukherjee as the then US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, but couldn't get through to either.
(Image Credit: AP)