Terror suspect loses appeal against extradition

19th April 2005, Comments 0 comments

19 April 2005, BERLIN - A Syrian-born German who is accused of being Osama bin Laden's business associate in Germany lost a second appeal on Monday against extradition to Spain to face grave terrorism charges.

19 April 2005

BERLIN - A Syrian-born German who is accused of being Osama bin Laden's business associate in Germany lost a second appeal on Monday against extradition to Spain to face grave terrorism charges.

Mamoun Darkazanli, a Hamburg trader who was accused of dealings with al-Qaeda soon after the 11 September 2001 attacks but was not detained because of a lack of evidence, was arrested last October at Spain's request.

Judges in Hamburg have said that his business dealings since 1997 in Spain, Germany and Britain helped the terror network. He is alleged for example to have helped bin Laden purchase a freighter.

In a three-pronged legal challenge, Darkanzali's lawyers have now lost their case before a Hamburg appeals court and an appeal to an administrative tribunal in Berlin. They went to the capital to argue that the federal government broke the law with an extradition order.

Darkanzali has argued that his constitutional rights as a German citizen bar his extradition. But the tribunal disagreed on Monday.

A court spokesman said Darkanzali still cannot be extradited until an appeal to the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe is decided. Darkanzali's lawyers may also decide to appeal the Berlin decision to a higher administrative tribunal.

Spain accuses Darkanzali, who married a German woman and reportedly traded goods by telephone from his apartment in an inner- city district of Hamburg, of being a member of a terrorist organisation, a charge with a maximum penalty of 20 years in jail.

DPA

Subject: German news

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