You have probably seen this and the widget on my blog for a few months now, well today there’s some good news for him. The New York Times actually adds some new details too that I was not aware of in the fact that he worked with the US CIA for three years on this project. Now it appears an official in Pakistan says the sentence was too long and the former official handing down the ruling over stepped his bounds.
Doctor Who Helped US Find Bin Laden Sits Jailed in Pakistan–Will Zero Dark Thirty Nominated for an Oscar Help Free America’s Abandoned Hero?–Update
The doctor will get a new trial. He doesn’t get out though and remains incarcerated until the new trial is done. Pakistan has suffered some US aid from the US over this issue as well. BD
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — A Pakistani judicial official on Thursday overturned the conviction of a Pakistani doctor who helped the C.I.A. while it was searching for Osama bin Laden, and ordered a retrial.
The official, Sahibzada Muhammad Anis, who presided over an appellate court hearing the case, ruled that the tribal judge who convicted the doctor, Shakil Afridi, exceeded his authority when he sentenced him to 33 years in prison in May 2012.
Dr. Afridi’s lawyer, Samiullah Afridi, told reporters gathered outside Mr. Anis’s office in Peshawar, that the court had agreed to a fresh trial under the auspices of the political agent of Khyber, the most senior government official in Dr. Afridi’s home district.
Dr. Afridi’s fate has been a matter of contention between Pakistan and the United States. Leon E. Panetta, who was director of the C.I.A. at the time of the raid, confirmed in early 2012 that Dr. Afridi had played a role in the hunt for Bin Laden and expressed anger at his prosecution. Later, Dr. Afridi’s 33-year prison sentence drew sharp criticism from American congressmen, who cut American aid to Pakistan by $33 million.
American officials say Dr. Afridi was originally recruited to the C.I.A. about three years earlier to provide intelligence about Islamist militants in the Khyber tribal area, where he was working as a senior medical officer.
In Abbottabad, Dr. Afridi used C.I.A. funds to establish a hepatitis vaccination program that allowed his team to approach the house where Bin Laden was staying in a bid to confirm whether he was indeed inside