Bin Laden 'bodyguard' jailed in Morocco | india | Hindustan Times
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Bin Laden 'bodyguard' jailed in Morocco

india Updated: Feb 03, 2007 11:40 IST
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A Moroccan ex-Guantanamo detainee accused of briefly being a member of Osama bin Laden's personal bodyguard has been given a 10-year jail sentence by a Moroccan anti-terrorism court.

Mohamed Ben Moujane, who in October last year was handed over to Morocco by US authorities, denied terrorism but admitted visiting an Al-Qaeda training camp and meeting Bin Laden in Afghanistan.

Ben Moujane, 25, had been charged with "membership of a criminal group with the aim of preparing to commit terrorist acts" and "failing to denounce crimes against state security".

According to the court, Ben Moujane part of the Al-Qaeda leader's corps of bodyguards before he was arrested by Pakistani troops in 2001 and handed over to American troops.

His lawyer, Idriss Oua Ali, called on the court to acquit the defendant, arguing that he had already spent five years in Guantanamo.

It is the toughest sentence handed down by the court to seven ex-Guantanamo detainees to have appeared before it.

Three other former inmates of the notorious US detention centre were last year given jail sentences of between three and five years, while five others were acquitted by the court in a judgement last month.

In a separate case, the court sentenced 17 members of the Al Qaeda-linked Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat (GSPC) to up to 10 years in jail.

Six of the suspects had been handed over by Algeria, where they had been arrested on suspicion of recruitment for the GSPC.