CRIME DOES NOT PAY
President Pervez Musharraf has pledged that the disgraced founder of Pakistan’s nuclear-weapons program can keep the vast wealth he accumulated selling atom bomb-making technology to rogue states around the world.
Gen. Musharraf, just days after provoking worldwide consternation by pardoning Abdul Qadeer Khan for supplying nuclear expertise to Libya, Iran and North Korea, said in an interview with the London Sunday Telegraph that the scientist’s property or assets also would be spared.
“He can keep his money,” Gen. Musharraf said, adding that there had been good reason not to investigate the origin of Mr. Khan’s suspicious wealth before 1998, when Pakistan successfully tested its first nuclear weapon.
“We wanted the bomb in the national interest, and so you have to ask yourself whether you act against the person who enabled you to get the bomb.”
Mr. Khan is believed to have earned millions of dollars from his sale of nuclear know-how, beginning in the late 1980s. Much of the money was funneled through bank accounts in the Middle East.