Wednesday, May 09, 2007

The Trial....Day 32, May 4th

A Witness Who Names the Bombers

Kamal Ahbar is currently awaiting trial for another case (named Operación Sello), and was advised by the chief judge of his right not to incriminate himself. The witness declared that Larbi ben Sellam lived with him for several months, and that he knew Daoud Ouhnane. He also declared that he was in Turkey with Mohamed Afalah and was detained by the Turkish authorities; although he was later released. He said the last time he saw Afalah was in Syria in February 2005, after which Ahbar returned to Syria. The witness also declared on the relationship between Afalah and Mohamed Belhadj in Holland; he said that both had plenty of money and were able to obtain false documentation. The witness had known Afalah since childhood in Morocco. He said that either at the end of April 2004, or the beginning of May, Said Berraj and Afalah went to Belgium on their way to Iraq.

Ahbar said that Jamal Ahmidam was looking for weapons and got in contact with Antonio Toro and Rafa Zouhier, who bought 3 Kalashnikovs together with Mohamed Oulad Akcha and Daoud Ouhnane. The witness stated that Afalah, Berraj and Ouhnane did not have any relationship with Youssef Belhadj or Hassan el Haski. They were in contact with a man called Sabagh from Valencia, and someone else from a mosque in Madrid, as well as Allekema Lamari. Ahbar then claimed that the train bombings were prepared in Valencia, but that they had nothing to do with Al Qaeda. The telephones were supplied by the iman from the mosque in Madrid, Abu Jaber. He said that Larbi ben Sellam did not offer any assistance to Afalah.

According to this witness, the explosives were financed by a robbery of 200 kilos of hashish. Ahmidam, Ouhnane and Akcha travelled to Asturias the week before the attacks to obtain the explosives; the witness said he was told about this by Afalah and Ouhnane. He declared that those who placed the bombs were the 7 who died in the explosion in Leganés, together with Ouhnane and Afalah. He also said that he did not know Jamal Zougam, and that he had been told Zougam was not involved, Basel Ghalyoun was also not part of the group.

Contacts of the Accused

Mohammad Suleyman rented a room in the property in the Madrid street of Virgen del Coro, where some of the accused also lived. He lived there for several months in 2003. The witness was working at night and said he did not have much relationship with the others living at the property. The witness declared that he did not see any meetings where pro-Islamist videos were shown, and said that he would have been aware if many people had arrived for a meeting. He did declare that he knew Serhane ben Abdelmajid (“El Tunecino”), and testified that Basel Ghalyoun, Mouhannad Almallah Dabas, and Fouad el Morabit were all friends of El Tunecino.

Abdul Karim Rahim Awleya testified concerning Mouhannad Almallah Dabas. He said that Almallah Dabas had family problems and that in the mosque they attended the iman was trying to deal with this. The witness said he also knew El Tunecino.

The Arrest of Abdelilah el Fadoual el Akil

The police witness with number 13404 was a brigade chief in the Spanish enclave of in 2004, and received orders from Madrid to arrest Abdelilah el Fadoual el Akil. This witness said they managed to locate him via his brother. He participated in a search of the arrested mans home, and all personal effects removed from the property were sent to Madrid. Police witness 65094 was also involved in the detention of El Akil, and participated in his transfer to Madrid. He said the search of El Akil’s home involved the removal of documents and a computer which filled 7 bags in total. El Akil was taken to Madrid by helicopter. A third police witness involved in the arrest, number 53445, also stated that they located El Akil through his brother.

The evidence from Kamal Ahbar could potentially be sensational in that he points the finger directly at named individuals as being responsible for the bombings. However, if any of what he says is true then the only guilty ones amongst the accused are those said to have supplied the explosives, Ahbar has drawn a line which puts those who are dead or missing one one side, and those who are alive but facing charges on the other. The iman who he named as being amongst the organisers is the police informer known as "Cartagena", a favourite of the conspiracy theorists. Ahbar's declaration continues in the next session. The rest of the witnesses from today's session add extra information but shed little light on events, it seems clear that we are reaching the end of the witness appearances.

Datadiar - Daily Summary
ABC - Kamal Ahbar

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