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Germans Sentence Terrorist to 15 Years

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Feb. 19, 2003 – A Moroccan man has been sentenced to 15 years in a German prison for his part in the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

A German court in Hamburg found Mounir el Motassadeq guilty of being an accessory to murder in the deaths of 3,045 men, women and children in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania. He was also charged with five counts of attempted murder and bodily injury.

The sentence was the maximum the 28-year-old engineering student could receive. El Motassadeq had been convicted of aiding the Hamburg al Qaeda terrorist cell that launched the Sept. 11 attacks. He had trained in an al Qaeda camp in Afghanistan. Trial testimony painted el Motassadeq as a radical who fit in with the plot leader Mohammed Atta.

Court records indicate el Motassadeq was a member of the al Qaeda cell from its start. He arrived in Germany in 1993 and met Atta the following year.

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