Islamic extremists 'planned to blow up top court'
15 October 2007, MADRID- (AFP) - The trial of 30 Al-Qaeda-inspired Islamic extremists who allegedly planned to detonate a truck packed with explosives outside Spain's high court in Madrid and other buildings began Monday.
15 October 2007
MADRID- (AFP) - The trial of 30 Al-Qaeda-inspired Islamic extremists who allegedly planned to detonate a truck packed with explosives outside Spain's high court in Madrid and other buildings began Monday.
Public prosecutors are demanding prison sentences of between two and 46 years for the mostly Algerian defendants, charged with belonging to a terrorist organization, conspiracy to commit a terrorist attack and forgery.
The suspected ringleader -- Abderrahman Tahiri, alias Mohamed Achraf -- is believed to have set up four cells since 2000, known as the "Martyrs for Morocco", to stage attacks in Spain, often with recruits he met while in jail.
Prosecutors believe Tahiri planned to crash a truck loaded with 500 kilograms (1,100 pounds) of explosives against the Audencia Nacional, Spain's national high court and nerve centre for investigating terrorism.
Spain's supreme court, a central Madrid train station and the headquarters of the conservative Popular Party -- in power when the group was uncovered in 2004 -- were among other possible targets.
Tahiri, an Algerian born in the United Arab Emirates, was in jail between 1999 and 2002 for credit card fraud.
Subject: Spanish news