Mumbai gunman pleads guilty in court

Mumbai's Tai Mahal hotel burns during last November's attack by gunmen.
The lone surviving gunman captured during last year’s terrorist assault on Mumbai confessed his involvement in the attacks in court Monday.

Mohammed Ajmal Kasab is one of 10 Pakistani nationals who police said unleashed terror on India’s financial capital for four days and three nights in November. Other gunmen were killed during the attacks. “The plea of guilt has not been completely recorded in court,” Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam told reporters. “We will now determine whether he is telling the truth. Is there more he has to say Is he trying to shift the blame to the attackers who died We will analyze his statement fully.” Police said the gunmen killed more than 160 people, including many foreigners, as they laid siege on buildings such as the Taj Mahal Palace and Tower and Oberoi-Trident hotels, Mumbai’s historic Victoria Terminus train station and the Jewish cultural center, Chabad House.

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Authorities said Kasab, 21, was trained by Lashkar-e-Tayyiba, which was banned in Pakistan in 2002 after an attack on India’s parliament. The group denied responsibility. The man was caught on surveillance camera holding a gun as he stalked and killed people inside the train station, police said. He’s also accused of shooting people at the city’s Cama hospital. Kasab faces 86 charges, including waging war against India, murder and attempted murder. He had pleaded not guilty to all charges, and recanted a confession to the crimes that he said was made under duress. CNN’s Mallika Kapur said Kasab had stood up in court and told the judge: “Sir, I plead guilty to my crime.” Asked to clarify his plea, Kasab said he pleaded guilty to all charges, Kapur said. His confession Monday caught prosecutors by surprise, Nikam said. The trial had been under way for two weeks, and the court had heard from 134 of 150 witnesses. “Not only is he a grade-A terrorist, he is a good actor also,” Nikam said. “He has tried many different tactics. But this is a big victory for the prosecution.”