Court adds two more to terror list [Archives:2006/938/Front Page]

April 17 2006

Adel Al-Khawlani
SANA'A, April 16 ) The State Security Specialized Penal Court (SSSPC) added two men Saturday to the list of the 17 terror suspects charged with forming an armed band planning attacks against U.S. interests in the country.

At the trial of the 17 suspects, the prosecution said the two suspects Jalal Al-Kadas, 41, and Aqil Al-Kuhali, 38, had “facilitated the entry of the two accused Saudi nationals Ahmad Ali Yasin and Sarmad Al-Shammari from Syria to Yemen.”

The SSSPC adjourned case of the 17 suspects for two weeks, after it added two new suspects to the list giving the number 19, to enable suspect No. 19 and his defense-advocate to view the case file and respond to the prosecution.

During its Saturday's hearing chaired by judge Mohamed Al-Ba'adani, the SSSPC demanded the prosecution to discuss appeals of suspects Ammar Fadhel and Jamal Fadhel as the two were alleged to have possessed computers, a camera, recorder and mobile phone, which were not mentioned in previous reports. The court asked the prosecution to present the original documents revealing identities of four Saudi citizens.

The prosecution accused Al-Kuhali of involvement in forming an armed band plotting attacks against senior government officials and U.S. citizens in Yemen.

During the session, the prosecutor confirmed the suspects went to the Passports Authority to get a visa for the Saudi citizen Mohamed Falah Al-Qahtani to enter Yemen. He added the suspects trickily machinated the visa-related procedures to have it carry the name of Khaled Yasin Al-Shammari, an Iraqi national.

The prosecution stated that suspect No. 6 Ammar Fadhel, nicknamed as Abu Asem Taleb, ordered suspect No. 18 Al-Kadas to bring visas for Yasin and Al-Shammari and demanded Al-Kuhali to guarantee the two persons' entry into Yemen as he is a trader.

The prosecution quoted suspect No. 6 as saying Al-Kuhali filled in the guarantee forms and managed to get the visas for Yasin and Al-Shammari to enter Yemen. Al-Kuhali left answers to courts' interrogations to his defense-advocate, who in turn urged the court to look into the case file and photocopy the indictment and evidence for him to respond to the prosecution questions.

Suspects Ammar Fadhel and Jamal Fadhel asked the court to return their three computers, video camera, recorder and mobile phone, seized by the Political Security, claiming these devices were never indicated in the report.

Five Saudi citizens are part of the band, which is accused of acting on orders of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, al Qaeda's leader in Iraq.

In February, prosecutors said the band had planned to carry out attacks to avenge for the CIA's killing of a top al Qaeda activist with a drone in the Yemeni eastern city of Mareb in 2002.

Yemen has cracked down on al Qaeda-linked militants following attacks at home.