BY CLEMENTE LISI
A Pakistani man charged with carrying out last year’s Mumbai terror attacks broke out into laughter today when he was asked by an Indian judge whether he understood the charges against him.
Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, 21, was one of 10 armed terrorits who ran amok in India’s financial capital last November during a series of commando-style attacks that killed 164 people.
“Kasab was smiling throughout the hearing and said that he was from Pakistan,” Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam told The Times of London. “He laughed when the judge asked him if he understood everything in the [indictment].”
Kasab, the only one of the terror suspects to be captured alive, was dubbed “the baby-faced killer” after being caught on camera wearing a knapsack carrying ammo and grenades while brandishing an AK-47 rifle.
Indian authorities claim Kasab and an accomplice killed 58 people at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminal, the city’s main train station.
Nine other attackers were killed by Indian police during the three-day siege, which targeted luxury hotels, a Jewish community center and other sites across the city.
If convicted of murder and waging war against India, Kasab faces death by hanging.
This morning’s hearing marked the formal start of what has been described as India’s “trial of the century.”
Kasab, who sported a beard and a grey t-shirt, is accused of being a soldier for the Islamist Lashkar-e-Taiba, an Islamist militant group believed to have been behind the Mumbai attacks.
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