Dr. A. Q. Khan has been set free by the Islamabad High Court in Pakistan after five years of house arrest following a publicly broadcast apology to the nation by Khan for his nuclear proliferation activities. Under international pressure, the government of Pakistan is considering appealing his release. This is a November 2005 article about Khan's activities by William Langewiesche in The Atlantic:
Rawalpindi is a city of two million residents on the northern plains of the Punjab, in Pakistan. It is a teeming place, choked with smoke and overcrowded with people just barely getting by. A large number of them live hand to mouth on the equivalent of a few hundred dollars a year. Much of their drinking water comes from a lake in the peaceful countryside north of town. The lake is surrounded by tree-lined pastures and patches of sparse forest. The navy of Pakistan has a sailing club there, on a promontory with a cinder-block shack, a dock, and one small sloop in the water—a Laser 16 with dirty sails, which sees little use. Though fishermen and picnickers sometimes appear in the afternoons or evenings, the lakefront on both sides of the promontory is pristine and undeveloped. The emptiness is by design: though the land around the lake is privately owned, zoning laws strictly forbid construction there, in order to protect Rawalpindi's citizens from the contamination that would otherwise result. This seems only right. If Pakistan can do nothing else for its people, it can at least prevent the rich from draining their sewage into the water of the poor.
But Pakistan is a country corrupted to its core, and some years ago a large weekend house was built in blatant disregard of the law, about a mile from the navy's sailing club, clearly in sight on the lake's far shore. When ordinary people build illegal houses in Pakistan, the government's response is unambiguous and swift: backed by soldiers or the police, bulldozers come in and knock the structures down. But the builder of this house was none other than Dr. Abdul Quadeer Khan, the metallurgist who after a stint in Europe had returned to Pakistan in the mid-1970s with stolen designs, and over the years had provided the country—single-handedly, it was widely believed—with an arsenal of nuclear weapons.