Gurpatwant Singh Pannun : “US Justice Department Charges Indian Official in Failed Plot to Kill Sikh Separatist Leader”

Death – Obituary – Accident and Crime News : US Justice Department Accuses Indian Government Official of Directing Failed Plot to Kill Sikh Separatist Leader

In a shocking revelation, the US Justice Department has stated that an Indian government official was behind the failed plot to assassinate a Sikh separatist leader who is also a US citizen. The department has filed charges against Nikhil Gupta, a 52-year-old Indian national, for orchestrating the attempted murder.

Gupta now faces murder-for-hire charges, which carry a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, along with conspiracy to commit murder-for-hire, which also carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison. The charges were announced by US Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department’s National Security Division, Matthew G. Olsen.

According to federal prosecutors in Manhattan, Gupta collaborated with an Indian government employee responsible for security and intelligence. Gupta was apprehended by Czech authorities in June and is currently awaiting extradition.

While the prosecutors did not disclose the names of the Indian government official or the target, it has been revealed that the target is Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, a dual citizen of the United States and Canada.

Damian Williams, the top federal prosecutor in Manhattan, stated, “The defendant conspired from India to assassinate, right here in New York City, a US citizen of Indian origin who has publicly advocated for the establishment of a sovereign state for Sikhs.”

The indictment describes the Indian official as a “Senior Field Officer” involved in “Security Management” and “Intelligence,” employed by the Indian government, who “directed the plot from India.”

US prosecutors have disclosed that Gupta was recruited by the Indian official in May 2023 to carry out the assassination. Gupta allegedly informed the official about his involvement in drug and weapons trafficking.

At the direction of the Indian official, Gupta contacted a criminal associate to hire a hitman. However, the associate turned out to be an undercover agent from the Drug Enforcement Administration. Following the killing of Nijjar, Gupta messaged the undercover agent, stating that Nijjar “was also the target” and that they had “many targets.”

According to US authorities, Gupta agreed to pay an assassin $100,000 to eliminate the Sikh separatist leader residing in New York City. The charges state that on June 9, 2023, Gupta arranged for an associate to deliver $15,000 in cash to the undercover agent as an advance payment for the murder.

Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, expressed, “The law enforcement partners neutralized this deadly and outrageous threat. We will not tolerate efforts to assassinate US citizens on US soil and stand ready to investigate, thwart, and prosecute anyone who seeks to harm and silence Americans here or abroad.”

India’s Washington embassy and foreign ministry have yet to respond to requests for comment. However, the foreign ministry has stated that New Delhi will formally investigate the concerns raised by the United States.

In response to the situation, India has established a high-level inquiry committee to probe the allegations regarding the conspiracy to kill the Sikh extremist on American soil. External Affairs Ministry spokesman, Arindam Bagchi, emphasized that India takes such inputs seriously as they affect national security interests and that relevant departments are currently examining the issue.

With the revelations of this shocking plot, it remains to be seen how both countries will proceed in their investigations and what further actions will be taken to address this dangerous threat.

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