Al-Qaeda suspect arrested in Germany

10th October 2006, Comments 0 comments

10 October 2006, BERLIN - A suspected supporter of the al-Qaeda terrorist network was arrested Tuesday in Germany after police turned up evidence that the 36-year-old Iraqi had been putting video messages from Osama bin Laden on the internet. Prosecutors said the man known as Ibrahim R. would appear Wednesday before a federal magistrate in Germany's judicial capital, Karlsruhe. More than a dozen police detained the suspect at dawn at the family's first-storey apartment in a shabby red-tiled building in Geo

10 October 2006

BERLIN - A suspected supporter of the al-Qaeda terrorist network was arrested Tuesday in Germany after police turned up evidence that the 36-year-old Iraqi had been putting video messages from Osama bin Laden on the internet.

Prosecutors said the man known as Ibrahim R. would appear Wednesday before a federal magistrate in Germany's judicial capital, Karlsruhe.

More than a dozen police detained the suspect at dawn at the family's first-storey apartment in a shabby red-tiled building in Georgsmarienhuette, a small steel-mill town in the north of Germany.

The man reportedly did not resist arrest. Police also seized his laptop computer and disks.

His wife told reporters that police had searched their home on two previous occasions but had released Ibrahim R. both times after questioning.

"He uses the internet no more than other people do," she said. The couple have three children.

Asked if he had contact with al-Qaeda, she said, "I don't know."

Using telephone taps last year, investigators traced the man, who they say has distributed video and audio messages from bin Laden, his deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri and the late Iraqi terror kingpin Abu-Musab al-Zarqawi.

Acting on a September 28 warrant, police detained Ibrahim R. on suspicion of supporting a foreign terrorist group, a second-degree offence that ranks below being a "member" of a terrorist group.

A federal prosecutor's statement said the suspect had distributed messages "worldwide" but did not specify whether this was by private email or by publishing them online where anyone could obtain them. Nor was it disclosed if he had acted alone or in consort with others.

Ibrahim R.'s landlord, 43, who is a friend of the family, dismissed the allegations, saying, "It'll turn out again to be nothing."

He said the suspect had been out of work for two years, but had worked as a carpet-layer previously in the southern German city of Regensburg.

Neighbours described Ibrahim R. as kind and always willing to help out. Ahmed Yordem, 70, said, "He's very friendly and rather quiet."

The landlord praised R for once shovelling 160 cubic metres of soil for him as a favour without pay.

A German newspaper, Die Welt, was to appear Wednesday with a report that Ibrahim R. had been due to leave Germany after his residence permit expired November 18 because he had been refused an extension.

German security authorities have regularly voiced concern that the country may be seen by al-Qaeda as a safe haven for plotting attacks.

Three al-Qaeda terrorists who piloted hijacked jets in the September 11, 2001 attacks on New York and Washington were students in Germany for several years before moving to the United States to attend flying school.

DPA

Subject: German news

0 Comments To This Article