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Published on May 8, 2014
FBI agent Joel Cox was travelling from Karachi to Islamabad by PK-308 on May 5 evening when, during a routine search by Airport Security Force (ASF) staff, 15 bullets and a magazine were found in his bag. He was handed over to the airport police station where a case was lodged against him under Section 23 1(a) of the Sindh Arms Act, 2013. The district Malir court has already remanded the suspect to police custody till May 10. The bail was granted to the accused on the condition of producing a surety bond worth Rs1 million. A source told Express News that Cox had claimed in his request that the ammunition found in his bag was not his own and that he was being framed. Another source said the court was pressured by the government and the US embassy into granting the bail. The chief and home secretaries reportedly visited the jail to ensure the FBI agent was released. Investigation Even after hours of arrest, investigators have failed to decode information from the devices belonging to the agent. According to the latest details, the police officers at the Artillery Maidan police station are finding it difficult to interrogate the FBI agent as he only speaks English. Also, Cox has been insisting that his embassy should be contacted for all the queries. The detained FBI agent has been reportedly afforded VIP protocol and provided with fast food meals. The devices seized from Cox's possession include pen cameras and locator gadget. The bullets he was carrying are also said to be different than those found in Pakistan. Malir SSP Rao Anwar told Express News that no criminal record was found against the agent. He said Cox had come to Pakistan with a 90-day long visit visa on a passport made five months ago. Anwar said people Cox had met during his stay in the country were also being interrogated. Pakistan-US coordination During the daily press briefing, spokesperson for the US State Department Jen Psaki said US officials were coordinating with the Pakistani authorities to resolve this matter. "This individual detained is an employee of the FBI who was on a temporary duty assignment to provide routine assistance to the legal attache at the US mission. But we are coordinating closely to resolve this manner with authorities, and we are hopeful in that regard," she said.