CIA kills four criminals in ‘staged encounter’

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The Lahore Crime Investigation Agency (CIA) began its killing spree of 2015 by gunning down four hardened criminals in Manawan area in an alleged staged encounter in the early hours of Friday.

Although the CIA Lahore chief Umar Virk has claimed that the police team had raided a hideout in Manawan on information that notorious criminals wanted in several cases were present there, sources in CIA told Pakistan Today that the men were already in their custody since December last year.

According to the official statement released by the CIA police, Usman Akbar alias Gujjar, Irfan, Shakir and Amjad were involved in several cases of heinous nature including murders, kidnappings for ransom and armed robberies. The statement said that at least 43 cases were registered against the gangsters in different cities of Punjab.

CIA sources said that police had picked up Usman Akbar and Shakir from the Yateemkhana Chowk area a month ago and during interrogation they had led the investigators to their two accomplices Irfan and Amjad, who were also taken into custody.

“The police only showed the arrests of Usman Akbar and Shakir in the official record while the other two were kept in a private torture cell of the CIA,” the sources claimed.

They said that Amjad had fled the Sheikhupura District Jail some years ago while Irfan had managed to escape from a Faisalabad prison van during which two other prisoners were killed.

A resident of Yaseen Town in Manawan, where the alleged encounter took place, told Pakistan Today on the condition of anonymity that he woke up to sound of heavy gunfire.

“I hurriedly went to my rooftop and saw around 10-12 policemen pumping bullets into two police vehicles which were parked on the road facing each other. Soon after a large police contingent arrived on the scene and cordoned off the area. I later saw the policemen shifting blood-soaked bodies of four men into another mobile van,” he said, insisting that no cross firing had taken place.

Talking to Pakistan Today, CIA Iqbal Town Sub-Inspector Nawaz Cheema said that Usman Akbar and Shakir were in their custody for the last 10 days and during interrogation they had informed them about the location of Irfan and Amjad.

“We raided the compound in Yaseen Town but Irfan and Amjad opened fire on us. Fortunately there were no casualties on our side but the criminals’ firing killed Usman and Shakir who were sitting in the mobile van while we managed to kill Irfan and Amjad in retaliatory gunfire,” he said.