News headlines

Times of India

Jul 16: MELBOURNE: Indian doctor Mohammed Haneef, charged in connection with last month's failed car bomb attacks in Britain, was on Monday granted bail by an Australian court hearing into the charges.

The Brisbane magistrate Jacqui Payne ruled that Haneef should be released on bail on a surety of $10,000 and on the condition that the 27-year-old should report to the Southport police station three times a week, according to the ABC television.

He has already surrendered his passport. The Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions argued that Haneef was a flight risk, but Magistrate Jacqui Payne listed eight reasons for granting bail, among them that there was nothing to directly link him with the terrorist organisation in Britain, it said.

While Payne had argued for the Indian national to remain behind bars, citing federal government legislation which states those charged with terrorism offences can only be granted bail in "exceptional circumstances", Haneef's lawyers had argued for his release labelling the case against Haneef was "extremely weak".

Police described his support for the plot as "reckless" rather than deliberate, and Haneef's lawyer claimed the case was weak.

Haneef was taken into custody on July 2 when he attempted to leave Australia on a one-way ticket, was charged with providing "reckless" support to a terrorist group.

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