Five American men suspected of plotting attacks in Pakistan were scheduled to appear in a Pakistani court yesterday, with police expected to seek terrorism charges that could carry life sentences.
The men were arrested in early December in the eastern Pakistani city of Sargodha in a case that has spurred fears that Westerners are traveling to Pakistan to join al-Qaeda and other militant groups.
Police said recently they would seek life sentences on terror charges against the five young Muslim men, who are from the Washington area.
Under Pakistan’s complicated judicial system, police were expected to recommend charges during yesterday’s session. However, the anti-terrorism court did not have to charge the men immediately, and they were likely to be given time to prepare their defense.
Police have not said what the group’s intended target was, but authorities say the men had a map of Chashma Barrage — a complex located near nuclear power facilities that includes a water reservoir and other structures.
It lies in the populous province of Punjab, about 200km southwest of Islamabad.