Morocco sentences Swiss man to 10 years in jail for ‘terrorism’

The man was convicted at the court of first instance in Sale, near Rabat. (File photo/AFP)
Updated 12 April 2019

Morocco sentences Swiss man to 10 years in jail for ‘terrorism’

RABAT: A Moroccan court has sentenced a Swiss citizen arrested in connection with the murder of two Scandinavian hikers to 10 years in prison on terrorism charges, his lawyer said Friday.
Kahlil Idriss said the man, identified only as Nicolas P., 33, was convicted Thursday in the city of Sale, near Rabat, in a case unrelated to the double murder.
A dual Swiss-Spanish citizen was among more than 20 people arrested after Danish student Louisa Vesterager Jespersen, 24, and 28-year-old Norwegian Maren Ueland were found beheaded on December 17 in the High Atlas mountains south of Marrakesh.
Nicolas P. was arrested in January for having had contact with the Swiss-Spanish national as well as compatriots with ties to Syria, Idriss said.
He was found guilty of “forming a terrorist group.”
The lawyer said he has filed an appeal on the basis that his client had signed a police report in Arabic without having read it.
The accused told the court he had been paid by Switzerland’s secret services for making contact with Swiss terror suspects.
Moroccan authorities allege the four main suspects in the hikers’ murders were sympathizers of Daesh but not in direct contact with Daesh members in Iraq or Syria.


Sudan’s deposed Bashir questioned over 1989 coup: lawyer

Updated 10 December 2019

Sudan’s deposed Bashir questioned over 1989 coup: lawyer

KHARTOUM: Sudan’s former president Omar Al-Bashir appeared on Tuesday before a prosecutors’ committee over the 1989 coup that brought him to power, his lawyer said.
Bashir was “brought to be investigated in the case of the alleged 1989 coup,” said his lawyer, Mohamed Al-Hassan, who did not attend the hearing.
The lawyer also told reporters that in his view the hearing was “not a judicial matter, it’s a political matter.”
In 1989, Bashir, a brigadier at the time, seized power in an Islamist-backed coup that toppled the elected government of prime minister Sadiq Al-Mahdi.
The former president was himself ousted by the army in April of this year after months of nationwide protests against his iron-fisted rule of three decades.
On November 12, Sudanese authorities filed charges against Bashir and some of his aides for “plotting” the 1989 coup. The prosecution established a special committee for the case.
If found guilty, he could face the death penalty or life imprisonment under Sudanese law.
Sudan is now ruled by a joint civilian and military sovereign council, which is tasked with overseeing a transition to civilian rule as demanded by the protest movement.
Bashir is being held in Kober prison in a separate case, for which he has been on trial since August, on charges of illegally acquiring and using foreign funds.
A verdict is due in that case on Saturday.
On Tuesday, Bashir was taken from Kober prison to the prosecutor’s office in a convoy under strong armed protection.
After the hearing, which lasted about an hour, a crowd gathered in front of the prosecutor’s office, chanting “Kober prison — the best place for you!” and “you killed people!“
Wearing the traditional white Sudanese jalabiya and turban, Bashir raised his hands to the crowd, before he set off back toward Kober in the convoy.
The veteran leader is also wanted by The Hague-based International Criminal Court on charges of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity over his role in the war in Sudan’s western Darfur region.
To date, Sudanese transitional authorities do not want to extradite the former leader to The Hague.