Detained US citizen an FBI man: report

‘Joel Cox was on an assignment to train local police’

KARACHI – Joel Cox, the US national who was arrested on Mondat at the Jinnah International Airport for carrying bullets, has turned out to be an agent for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the US investigating agency.

The US national was visiting Pakistan as part of an assignment to provide training to local police, an official said. A State Department official said diplomats were working with authorities in Pakistan to release the US national.

On Tuesday, Cox appeared before the court to face anti-terrorism charges, which restrict unauthorized weapons or ammunition on commercial flights. Employees for the FBI and other US agencies are allowed to carry weapons in Pakistan when authorized.

In this case, the US national appeared to forget he had a small number of bullets in his possession, the US law enforcement official said. Local media reported he had 15 bullets. US officials told The Washington Post newspaper the national was in Pakistan as part of a multi-agency effort to help the country investigate corruption.

The operative's father told the newspaper his son was scheduled to be in the South Asian nation for about three months for office-type work with a non-FBI-type entity. Meghan Gregonis, a spokeswoman for the US Embassy in Islamabad, said US officials were working to resolve the matter.

A Foreign Ministry official told the Post that local officials were trying to gather more information about the US national’s job in Pakistan. NBC News reported that the American agent did not resist arrest in Karachi and was handed over to airport police for further investigation.

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