- The Washington Times - Saturday, May 18, 2002

KARACHI, Pakistan Hair and blood samples from a dismembered body were sent for DNA testing yesterday, as authorities sought to confirm whether they had found the remains of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl.

The body was removed from a shallow grave on property Pakistan state television said was owned by Al-Rashid Trust, a group the United States has identified as a terrorist organization.

The body was found near a blood-spattered shed where authorities believe Mr. Pearl was held before his videotaped killing. In the shack, police found a car seat that resembled one in pictures Mr. Pearl's kidnappers sent to news agencies, chief investigator Mansour Mughal told the Associated Press.

Samples of blood on the shed's walls were taken for DNA testing, Mr. Mughal said. A jacket resembling the track suit Mr. Pearl was photographed wearing was found buried in the grave with the body, he said.

The body was cut into 10 pieces, including a severed head, Mr. Mughal said.

It could be a week before the results of DNA tests are known, police Chief Kamal Shah told reporters in Karachi.

Three suspects arrested Thursday told police where the body could be found. Pakistan television identified the three as members of the outlawed Lashkar-e-Janghvi, a radical Islamic group with links to al Qaeda whose members were suspected of taking refuge in Afghanistan during the Taliban rule.

The body was found barely 500 yards from a large Islamic religious school, Jamia Rashidia, that was founded by Mufti Rashid, the man who began Al-Rashid Trust.

The United States froze Al-Rashid Trust's assets after accusing it of being a conduit for money to al Qaeda to finance international terrorism.

Chief Shah refused to say whether police suspect al Qaeda involvement in Mr. Pearl's kidnapping and killing, but he didn't rule it out.

According to Mr. Mughal, the shed resembled the background in photographs of Mr. Pearl.

The three newest suspects have not been formally charged. Police say they believe the men are among seven sought in connection with Mr. Pearl's disappearance and death.

Four Islamic radicals have been on trial since April 22 on charges of murder and kidnapping in the case. They have pleaded not guilty.


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