Islamabad: Pakistani authorities have seized a satellite phone from a jailed doctor, who helped CIA trace Osama bin Laden, and also arrested four police commandos guarding his cell, a media report has said.
The law enforcement agencies yesterday evening seized a ’Thoraya’ satellite phone from Shakeel Afridi in Central Jail Peshawar and have arrested four police commandos on guard at his cell in the jail, official sources were quoted by Dawn news as saying.
After interrogation, one of the four arrested commandos, confessed that he had provided satellite phone to Afridi, official intelligence sources said. The sources also said that Afridi had made more than 68 calls from the satellite phone set and most of these calls were long-distance, but the authorities are assessing the satellite phone data to ascertain the country location.
After a controversial interview with Fox News, a US-based news channel, a few weeks back, the authorities had installed special equipment around Central Jail Peshawar to check Afridi’s activities and had traced some calls from his jail
cell, following which the authorities conducted investigation with the four policemen, the sources said.
One of the policemen, admitted of his involvement in providing Afridi the satellite phone. The sources said that it’s likely that the interview might have been conducted through the satellite phone but the authorities are assessing the facts.
The jail authorities have not give any detail about the incident. Afridi’s lawyer or brother who had come to see him a while ago might have smuggled the phone into the prison and given it to him, Deputy Superintendent Prison Maqsood-ur-Rehman was quoted by Geo News as saying.
The doctor is said to have helped CIA trace Laden, who was killed in a raid by the US navy SEALS on his Abbottabad compound in May, 2011. Afridi was sentenced to 33 years in jail on May 24 under the system of tribal justice for treason over alleged ties to Lashkar-e-Islam and not for working for the CIA, for which the court said it did not have jurisdiction.