Lahore: Three months after a group of gunmen kidnapped a sick and elderly American development expert in Pakistan, police said Friday they believe he is still alive but have no leads in the case.
Police in the eastern city of Lahore said they have released the only witnesses, have no crime scene evidence and cannot fathom a motive for the abduction on August 13 of Warren Weinstein.
The 70-year-old country director for US-based consultancy J.E. Austin Associates was snatched after gunmen used his driver to trick their way into his room at his Lahore home just days before he was due to return to the United States.
Three security guards and Weinstein’s driver had been held in custody over suspicions that somebody close to him leaked details of his movements.
“We kept the driver and guards for three months and interviewed them at length. We couldn’t find anything from those people,” special investigations officer Abdul Razzaque Cheema told AFP.
“We couldn’t get proper fingerprints from there (the house). We checked the (CCTV) camera but due to darkness there was nothing. So from the scene of the crime we couldn’t find anything and we have no information coming.” Weinstein suffers from asthma, heart problems and high-blood pressure, and fears have been growing for his health if still being held captive in Pakistan, which is deeply troubled by Taliban and al Qaeda-linked violence.
But “there is no confirmation that he’s dead,” said Cheema. “Nobody has hinted to us he’s dead. No, not at all. We consider him alive,” he added.