The doctor, a 'British' spy and the hunt for Osama

 

A green-eyed female spy with blonde hair and a British accent was reportedly one of the handlers of the Pakistani doctor who tried to help the CIA trace Osama Bin Laden.

She and other operatives would pick up the doctor at a petrol station in Islamabad, make him lie in the back seat of the vehicle beneath a blanket and then take him for debriefing.

The details emerged this week as prosecutors in Pakistan filed documents with a tribal court where the jailed doctor, Shakil Afridi, is seeking to overturn a 33-year prison sentence he was given after being accused of being a traitor.

"He met 25 times with foreign secret agents, received instructions and provided sensitive information to them," says an investigative report filed by prosecutors, according to the Washington Post. "The accused was aware that he was working against Pakistan."

The 48-year-old physician was convicted and sentenced in May after being accused of helping the CIA to try and locate the al-Qa'ida leader, who was killed in a raid by US special forces at a compound in the town of Abbottabad in 2011. In order to try and obtain a DNA sample from individuals at the compound that could have proved conclusively that Bin Laden was there, the doctor was asked to set up a fake vaccination programme.

As it was, the ruse was not successful, but the doctor was still paid $61,000 for trying, say prosecutors. He was arrested three weeks after the raid on Bin Laden's house, having apparently turned down an offer of relocation to the United States.

The US has admitted that Mr Afridi was helping them and has urged the Pakistani authorities to release him, saying that he has done nothing against his country and that he was trying to help kill a high-value militant. After he was jailed, American politicians threatened to withhold millions of dollars in aid.

The report claims that several days after the raid by US special forces, Mr Afridi received a call from "Sue". He travelled to Islamabad, where she told him his life was at risk and that he should try and escape to Afghanistan. She is said to have given him two numbers to call once he reached Kabul and that he could be picked up. The prosecutors claim Mr Afridi told them he declined to leave, because "I did not feel I had any involvement in the killing of Osama bin Laden".

The prosecutors report claim that Mr Afridi's handlers used several locations in Islamabad as pick-up points, including the Saeed Book Bank, a popular bookstore. There were several handlers, including at least two women.

Mr Afridi is appealing against his conviction under a tribal system in which he counsel has little opportunity to challenge the allegations of prosecutions. The doctor's lawyer could not be reached for comment last night.

Mr Afridi's family insists he has done nothing wrong. His brother, Jamil Afridi, previously told The Independent: "I have categorically said he is not guilty. Moreover, Dr Afridi had a US visa and had visited USA also. If he were guilty he could have left Pakistan and stayed in the US, which he did not do."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Voices
There will be a chance to bid for a rare example of the SAS Diary, collated by a former member of the regiment in the aftermath of World War II but only published – in a limited run of just 5,000 – in 2011
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm today
News
people
News
Elton John and David Furnish exchange marriage vows
peopleSinger posts pictures of nuptials throughout the day
News
File: James Woods attends the 52nd New York Film Festival at Walter Reade Theater on September 27, 2014
peopleActor was tweeting in wake of NYPD police shooting
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Sport
Martin Skrtel heads in the dramatic equaliser
SPORTLiverpool vs Arsenal match report: Bandaged Martin Skrtel heads home in the 97th-minute
Arts and Entertainment
The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit director Peter Jackson with his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
film
News
people
News
Billie Whitelaw was best known for her close collaboration with playwright Samuel Beckett, here performing in a Beckett Trilogy at The Riverside Studios, Hammersmith
people'Omen' star was best known for stage work with Samuel Beckett
Arts and Entertainment
Mark Wright has won The Apprentice 2014
tvThe Apprentice 2014 final
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Receptionist

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This law firm is seeking a happy, helpful and ...

The Jenrick Group: Production Supervisor

£26000 - £29000 per annum + Holidays & Pension: The Jenrick Group: Production ...

The Jenrick Group: Project Engineer

£33000 - £35000 per annum + Pension and holidays: The Jenrick Group: Project E...

The Jenrick Group: Maintenance Technician

£35200 per annum + Pension and holidays: The Jenrick Group: Maintenance Engine...

Day In a Page

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'