German prosecutors seek arrest warrant against Turkish terror suspect

17th August 2009, Comments 0 comments

The official said they had asked a federal court to issue the warrant against Mevlut Kar, 30, who is thought to have fled to Turkey as the trial of four defendants is taking place in Düsseldorf.

Berlin -- German prosecutors have asked for an international arrest warrant against a Turkish man suspected of involvement in a plot to attack US soldiers and diplomats stationed in Germany, a spokesman said.

The official said they had asked a federal court to issue the warrant against Mevlut Kar, 30, who is thought to have fled to Turkey as the trial of four defendants is taking place in the western German city of Düsseldorf.

Kar is suspected of providing the so-called Sauerland cell with more than 20 detonators for their explosives.

German media have reported that Kar has ties to Turkish intelligence but federal prosecutor Volker Brinkmann said Monday there was no evidence of this.

According to the weekly Der Spiegel, Kar is the target of several investigations into cases of terror attacks in Germany.

In statements to the police one Sauerland defendant, Atilla Selek, who is to testify in court soon, linked Kar to the group.

Two other defendants, including group leader Fritz Gelowicz, have already confessed in the Düsseldorf court after switching their pleas to guilty.

Gelowicz, 29, said Monday that their aim above all was to kill as many US soldiers based in Germany as possible.

He said the group had also targeted US consulates in Germany as "the absolute final warning" to the Berlin government before a key parliamentary vote to pull its troops out of Afghanistan.

The four, on trial since April, could face 15 years in prison for the bid to mount at least three car bombings against US military installations and American citizens in Germany.

Defence attorneys said the men aimed to shorten what had been expected to be a mammoth trial and reduce their sentences by confessing. They have not expressed remorse.

The men are charged with belonging to a terrorist organisation -- the Islamic Jihadic Union (IJU) in Pakistan, an extremist group linked to Al-Qaeda -- and plotting to stage attacks with explosives in September 2007.

Prosecutors accuse the group, known as the Sauerland cell after the region where they were captured in September 2007, of aspiring to carry out attacks on the same scale as those of September 11, 2001 on the United States which killed more than 3,000 people.

Two of the defendants, Gelowicz and Daniel Schneider, 23, are German converts to Islam, Selek, 24, is a German citizen of Turkish origin, and the fourth a Turkish national, Adem Yilmaz, 30.

AFP/Expatica

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