Al-Qaeda member extradited from Belgium
A Tunisian Al-Qaeda member, Nizar Trabelsi, has now been extradited to the US
Washington: A Tunisian Al-Qaeda member, who had traveled to Afghanistan and Pakistan for meeting the leaders of the terrorist outfit and get finances from them, has now been extradited to the US, the Department of Justice has said.
Nizar Trabelsi, was arrested in Belgium on September 13, 2001, before he could have carried out his planned attack.
After 12 years in custody there, where he served time on Belgian charges, Trabelsi was extradited and transported yesterday, to face charges in the United States.
Trabelsi, 43, was indicted in 2006 by a grand jury in the US District Court for the District of Columbia, and a superseding indictment was filed the following year.
According to the charges unsealed, Trabelsi personally met in the spring of 2001, with Osama bin Laden to volunteer for a suicide bomb attack against US interests.
Preparations unfolded over the next several months, with Trabelsi allegedly obtaining chemicals in Europe and subsequently joining others to scout a potential target: a military facility that was used by the United States and the US Air Force, according to the indictment.
Trabelsi, is charged with conspiracy to kill US nationals outside of the US; conspiracy and attempt to use weapons of mass destruction; conspiracy to provide material support and resources to a foreign terrorist organization; and providing material support and resources to a foreign terrorist organization.
He was living in Germany in 2000, when he met with other conspirators and made preparations to travel to Afghanistan to train for jihad.
According to the indictment, he later spoke with Muhammed Atef, a high-ranking member and chief military planner of al-Qaeda, at bin Laden’s direction.
Additionally, the indictment states, he met others, with whom he was to form a cell for the purpose of carrying out the suicide attack.
Trabelsi and other conspirators discussed various possible targets for a suicide bomb attack and he undertook training in how to place explosives.
In June 2001, the indictment states, Trabelsi traveled to Pakistan, where he obtained money from an Al-Qaeda associate for use in carrying out his mission, the indictment alleges.
The following month, he rented an apartment in Brussels, Belgium. While in Belgium, Trabelsi bought quantities of chemicals to be used in manufacturing a 1,000-kilogramme bomb, the indictment alleges.
Additionally, according to the indictment, he travelled at night with conspirators to scout the military base.