Brussels court tries suspected accomplices in Paris and Brussels terror attacks

Brussels court tries suspected accomplices in Paris and Brussels terror attacks
Credit: Belga

The prosecution on Friday requested prison sentences ranging from 1 to 2 years for four accused appearing before the Brussels Correctional Court for their supporting roles in the 2015 terror attacks in Paris.

The prosecution called for a suspended sentence of 18 months with probation for Rafik El Hassani and Ayoub Bazarouj, a two-year term for Soufiane Al Aroub and a one-year sentence for Mohamed Rabhioui.

The men are among a group of persons accused of helping the perpetrators of the terrorist attack that killed 130 persons in Paris in November 2015 and a twin attack, known as “Paris Bis,” that claimed 32 lives at Brussels Airport and the Brussels Metro in March 2016.

Did Rafik El Hassani know why his best friend Brahim Abdeslam travelled to Turkey in late January 2015? “He was perfectly aware” that Abdeslam was preparing to join the Islamic State (ISIS) terror group in Syria, the prosecutor maintained.

She argued in the case of Ayoub Bazarouj that he played the role of conduit for communications with his brother Youssef, a Jihadi fighter presumed to have died in Syria.

The prosecutor then charged that Soufiane Al Aroub, like El Hassani and Bazarouj, helped ISIS by driving Ahmed Dahmani to the airport. Dahmani, who is viewed as the logistician of the terror attacks perpetrated on 13 November 2015 in Paris, flew to Turkey on the night of the attacks.

The magistrate also accused Mohamed Rabhioui of helping Dahmani, mainly by serving as an intermediary between him and Brahim Abdeslam.

The federal prosecutor will complete her submissions on Monday morning, with cases against the last accused: Smaïl Farisi, Youssef El Ajmi, Abdoullah Courkzine and two persons charged with crimes other than terrorism, namely the fabrication of false papers.

Copyright © 2024 The Brussels Times. All Rights Reserved.