Australian wife 'quits' French suspect

29th January 2004, Comments 0 comments

SYDNEY, Jan 29 (AFP) - The Australian wife of suspected terrorist Willie Brigitte is ending her marriage after hearing French authorities detail their case against her husband, it was reported here Thursday.

SYDNEY, Jan 29 (AFP) - The Australian wife of suspected terrorist Willie Brigitte is ending her marriage after hearing French authorities detail their case against her husband, it was reported here Thursday.

After initially decaring she would stand by the 35-year-old Frenchman, Melanie Brown told The Australian newspaper she was leaving him.

"Some personal things have become apparent to me while I have been in France," she told the newspaper. "Because of these things I have concluded there is no future in the relationship with Mr. Brigitte."

Brigitte spent five months in Sydney before being arrested for immigration breaches and deported on October 17 to France, where he remains in jail under judicial investigation for terrorism-related offences.

Brown, a former Australian soldier, and Brigitte are both converts to Islam.

They married just four weeks before Brigitte's arrest in Sydney, then Brown travelled to France to try to visit him, but was detained by authorities.

She decided to end the marriage after four days of questioning, when French counter-terrorism experts showed her their dossier on Brigitte.

However, Brown said she was not passing judgment on Brigitte.

"I have never said Willie Brigitte is a terrorist," she said. "Everybody should wait until the French judicial proceedings run their proper course before declaring whether Willie Brigitte is guilty or otherwise."

She did not say when she would return to Australia.

Brigitte is being investigated in France for terrorist activities, in particular the killing of anti-Taliban military commander Ahmed Shah Massood in Afghanistan in September 2001.

Australian authorities say they were tipped off by French intelligence that Brigitte underwent terrorist training in Pakistan and Afghanistan and may have gone to Australia as part of a terrorist conspiracy.

© AFP

                                Subject: France news

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