Five Islamists jailed for up to eight years

15th September 2006, Comments 0 comments

15 September 2006, BRUSSELS — The Brussels court of appeal on Friday handed down sentences of between 40 months and eight years jail on members of the Moroccan Islamic group GICM for belonging to a terrorist group.

15 September 2006

BRUSSELS — The Brussels court of appeal on Friday handed down sentences of between 40 months and eight years jail on members of the Moroccan Islamic group GICM for belonging to a terrorist group.

Four of the group had been trained in camps in Afghanistan and were given sentences of five, seven (twice) and eight years. They are expected to appeal again and face a new hearing, probably at the end of the year.

The fifth man was given 40 months, reflecting his limited role as merely providing accommodation for the others and meeting places at his Schaerbeek snack bar as well as offering them the cover of employment in the restaurant.

Abdelkader Hakimi, who was given the heaviest sentence, was trained in explosives and had a key role in collecting funds from GICM's French cell, while the others were involved in transferring money and manufacturing fake documents.

The Moroccan Islamic Combatant Group (Groupe Islamique Combattant Marocain or GICM) is an extremist Islamic fundamentalist group operating in North Africa and suspected of having links with al-Qaeda.

Its goals reportedly include establishing an Islamic state in Morocco. The group emerged in the late 1990s, apparently drawing on Moroccan jihadists who had fought or trained in Afghanistan.

GICM is thought to be behind the May 2003 bombing in Casablanca that killed 45. An offshoot of the GICM, Salafia Jihadia, is thought to be responsible for the 2004 Madrid bombings.

[Copyright Expatica News 2006]

Subject: Belgian news

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