Pakistan charges bin Laden's widows

Posted Mar 8, 2012 by Layne Weiss
Pakistani authorities have charged Osama bin Laden's three widows with illegally entering and living in the country, the interior minister, Rehman Malik, told reporters Thursday.
Osama Bin Laden watches television in a video released on May 7  2011  provided by the U.S. Departme...
Osama Bin Laden watches television in a video released on May 7, 2011, provided by the U.S. Department of Defense.
U.S. Department of Defense
Osama bin Laden was killed in Pakistan by US forces last year. Following his death, Pakistan officials informed the US that three of bin Laden's wives were living in the country, CNN reports.
Malik has informed reporters that two of the widows are currently in custody, the status of the third widow is not clear at this time, but it has been confirmed that she was also living in Pakistan.
"Their entry into Pakistan was illegal," Malik said. "They did not inform the authorities that they were living there."
Malik also mentioned that there were many other incidents of "deception and forgery."
He also assured reporters that the women are being held in a "proper, legal manner." He was not clear, however, about where the women were being held, what court was handling the case, and what punishment they faced should they be convicted. So far, the only detail he has divulged is that the women and their children are being held at a house, which has been "declared a sub-jail," BBC News reports.
Malik has informed reporters the cases have been registered against the adults only. The children are not being charged.
According to the Pakistani foreign ministry, two of the wives are Saudi nationals and the other is from Yemen, Reuters reports.
According to BBC News, legal experts have said the maximum sentence the women can receive is 5 years.
BBC News' Ilyas Kahn has also said it is "very unlikely the women will be tried in an open court with media access."