A Pakistani man who routinely briefed high-level Pakistani officials on U.S. government foreign policy through connections he made at D.C. think tanks pleaded guilty Monday to failing to register as a foreign agent, the Justice Department said.
Nisar Ahmed Chaudhry, 71, a Pakistani national living in Columbia, Maryland, had represented himself as president of the Pakistan American League, an organization he claimed was dedicated to improving the relationship between Pakistan and the United States, according to court documents. But prosecutors said that from 2012 through 2018, Chaudhry acted as an agent on behalf of the Pakistani government.
Chaudhry admitted that he worked to engage in political activities to advance Pakistan’s interests and influence U.S. policy towards that country, according to court documents. He faces a maximum sentence of five years when sentenced on July 30.
Chaudhry networked with D.C.-area think tanks to develop relationships with officials who influence U.S. foreign policy, the Justice Department said. He then used information he learned from those contacts in meetings with high-level Pakistan officials both at its D.C. embassy and in travels abroad.
Through his think tank connections, Chaudhry sought to influence any unfavorable views of Pakistan held by former or current U.S. government officials, according to court documents. He accomplished this by employing certain methods of discussion during personal interactions or manipulating discussions at events he organized.
In exchange for his activities on behalf of the Pakistan government, Chaudhry was given assistance with procuring civilian, military or government jobs for relatives and associates in Pakistan, securing visas on an expedited basis for friends and relatives and the use of diplomatic channels to ship personal items.