Skip to comments.London Police Nab 6 More in Blasts Probe
Posted on 07/31/2005 9:22:26 AM PDT by Grampa Dave
London Police Nab 6 More in Blasts Probe
By CATHERINE McALOON, Associated Press Writer 19 minutes ago
Police arrested six people Sunday in the failed July 21 London transit bombings and were reportedly investigating the attackers' ties to Saudi Arabia and Italy, hurrying to track down any accomplices to prevent more attacks.
Key suspects were being interrogated in London in relation to the partially exploded bombs planted on three subway trains and a double-decker bus, police said, while authorities in Italy were pursuing contacts linked to suspected bomber Osman Hussain, arrested in Rome two days ago.
On Sunday, one of Hussain's brothers was arrested in northern Italy, the Italian news agency ANSA reported. He was not accused of terrorism, ANSA said.
Police discovered that Hussain called Saudi Arabia hours before his arrest, the Sunday Telegraph newspaper reported, and the Sunday Times said another bombing suspect went on a monthlong visit to Saudi Arabia in 2003, telling friends he was to undergo training there.
Police raided two properties in the Sussex region, arresting the six people at one location, a spokeswoman for the Metropolitan Police said. The six were being detained under anti-terrorism laws at a police station in Sussex.
The police spokeswoman would not specify the location of the raids or any further detail on those arrested. The four main suspects in the July 21 attacks are already in custody.
As investigators probed links to other attacks, Spain's intelligence chief dismissed the possibility that the London bombings were connected to the train bombings in Madrid last year that killed 191 people.
Alberto Saiz, the director of the National Intelligence Center, told the Madrid daily El Pais in an interview published Sunday that similarities between the attacks were limited to "their outward appearance" and the targeting of transport networks.
"At that point, the differences start," Saiz was quoted as saying. The July 7 group of London bombers was "small just four people less visible than the Madrid one."
"Two weeks later, they try a second episode of the same attack obviously, the perpetrators are not the same," Saiz said.
"In contrast to Madrid, this gives us the feeling that they are coordinated with other groups or have direction from above, and that there is a plan," he added. "This is not an isolated group that decides to act on its own account."
Four arrests were made in dramatic raids Friday in London and Rome, helping to ease the fears of a British capital on edge since four suicide bombers killed 52 victims on three subways and a double-decker bus on July 7. The July 21 bombing attempts rattled Londoners, but took no lives.
Police were searching for those who may have recruited and directed the bombers and built the explosives while also probing for connections between the terror cells, one made up mostly of Britons of Pakistani descent and the other mainly of east African-born Britons.
In Rome, investigators were interrogating Hussain, 27, an Ethiopian-born British citizen suspected of trying to bomb the Shepherd's Bush subway station in west London on July 21.
Hussain was arrested Friday at a Rome apartment reportedly belonging to a brother after police traced calls he made on a relative's cell phone. Britain has requested his extradition for questioning, and an initial hearing was held Saturday.
His attorney, Antonietta Sonnessa, said the extradition process could take two months. She said no formal charges had been filed against Hussain, also known as Hamdi Issac, and said he was likely to fight extradition.
A brother, Fati Issac, was arrested Sunday in the northern Italian town of Brescia on suspicion of destroying documents sought by investigators, ANSA said. He was not accused of terrorism, the report said. Hussain reportedly told investigators the bombers were motivated by anger over the Iraq war.
A legal expert familiar with the investigation told The Associated Press in Rome that Hussain admitted to a role in the attack but said it was only intended to be an attention-grabbing strike.
Hussain told interrogators he was not carrying enough explosives even to "harm people nearby," the expert said, speaking on condition of anonymity because Italian law requires that the ongoing investigation remain secret.
Hussain also said the bombers had been led by a man called "Muktar," the Rome daily La Repubblica reported. "Muktar showed us videos with images of the war in Iraq," Hussain said, according to Italian reports. Suspect Muktar Said Ibrahim, 27, was arrested Friday in London. The Ethiopian-born Briton, also known as Muktar Mohammed Said, is accused of planting explosives on a bus in east London. The Sunday Times said he went to Saudi Arabia in 2003.
A second man arrested in London on Friday, who identified himself as Ramzi Mohammed, is suspected of trying to blow up a train at the Oval Station. Another suspect, Yasin Hassan Omar, 24, a Somali with British residency, was arrested in Birmingham on Wednesday. He is suspected of trying to bomb a subway train near Warren Street station on July 21. ___ Associated Press writer Frances D'Emilio contributed to this report from Rome.
Below is the Reuters report on these new arrests.
Italian, UK police quiz suspects in bomb probe By Phil Stewart and Michael Holden
24 minutes ago
A prime suspect in the second wave of London bombings has told Italian detectives he took part in the attacks on the city's transport system as British police quizzed three other suspected bombers on Sunday.
A judicial source with direct contact to the man confirmed Italian media reports that Osman Hussain, arrested in Rome on Friday, has said that he participated in the July 21 failed attacks.
"Yes, yes. I can confirm that," the source told Reuters. He gave no further details.
Police arrested five further men and one women on Sunday in southern England under anti-terrorism laws in connection with the July 21 attempted bombings but a police source said the arrests were not a significant development in the inquiry.
That brings the total number of people being questioned by British investigators in relation to the probe, the biggest operation for London's police since World War II, to 17.
Hussain's court-appointed lawyer has suggested that the suspect, an Ethiopian-born British citizen, may try to resist extradition requested by British authorities.
British police believe they have captured all four men they were seeking over the July 21 botched bombings on three underground trains and a bus, which came exactly two weeks after four bombers killed themselves and 52 people in similar attacks.
After an international manhunt for suspected Islamist militants which culminated in a swoop on a housing estate in west London on Friday, three of the men are in custody in London and the fourth in Rome.
Officers are still looking for anyone who may have helped the bombers and warn of new strikes.
"We are still searching for the people who put the jobs together," said a police spokeswoman.
"Friday was a great success but the threat remains real -- people still need to be vigilant," she added.
As Britons worry about a fresh attack on London, domestic media said the police and security forces were trying to track down any further cells and a possible command structure behind the bombers.
Security experts described al Qaeda's pyramid structure.
"If you see the two groups of bombers as two separate teams of foot soldiers on the very bottom, then there is a possibility they are linked by the command structure in the level above," a security source told The Observer.
"This is the level we are trying to identify and track down," the source was quoted as saying.
A Zambian intelligence source said in Lusaka on Saturday the authorities had signed a deportation order for suspected British militant Haroon Rashid Aswad, who would be handed over to Britain once formalities were completed.
British police say they would like to question him but say he is not a priority in the London bombings investigation.
In Italy, the latest high-profile arrest stemming from at least 15 raids linked to Hussain's contacts was a man named as Fati Issac who police said was the brother of Hussain, also known as Hamdi Adus Issac.
A police source told Reuters the brother is accused of "hiding or destroying" documents. Another brother was arrested in Rome on Friday for possession of false documents.
Do you mean they are ALL Muslim? Gosh! I was so sure there would be some Buddhists....Good thing we don't do any profiling...after all, any day now there will be a Unitarian terrorist.DUH.
We REALLY need those cameras on public transportation, around sensitive locations. That was THE key to these arrests.They wouldn't have known where to begin without the pics.
Below is the BBC report on this latest roundup of Jihad Johnny Mohammeds connected to the London Bombings.
Seven held in anti-terror raids
SUSPECTED BOMBERS ARRESTED
1: Yasin Hassan Omar , 24, wanted over bomb attempt on a Tube near Warren Street, arrested in Birmingham
2: Muktar Said Ibrahim , 27, suspected of attempting to bomb a No 26 bus in Shoreditch, arrested in North Kensington, London
3: Ramzi Mohammed , wanted over failed attempt to bomb a Tube near Oval, arrested in North Kensington, London
4. Osman Hussain , 27 (also known as Hamdi Isaac) wanted over the Shepherd's Bush attack, arrested in Rome
Police investigating the failed London bomb attacks have arrested six men and a woman after two raids in Sussex.
It is believed the raids took place in Brighton. Scotland Yard said no armed officers were involved.
The arrests bring to 19 the number of people held in connection to the July 21 attacks, including the four suspected would-be bombers.
Earlier, Commons leader Geoff Hoon said ministers would look into how one suspect left Britain after the attacks.
Ethiopian-born Osman Hussain, 27, who has a British passport, is believed to have left Britain on a Eurostar train from London Waterloo on 26 July, travelling to Paris and Milan before arriving in Rome.
He is suspected of trying to blow up a train near Shepherd's Bush station in west London.
Speaking on the BBC, Mr Hoon said extra passport checks are being considered at departure points from the UK. The Tories said immediate action on border controls was "vital".
A Eurostar spokesman said that there is no permanent point manned by UK officials, but checks are implemented at times of heightened security.
The Home Office said immigration officials were in place at all British departure points from 7 July to 17 July. They were reinstated from 21 July.
All of those arrested in Sussex were held at one property under the Terrorism Act on suspicion of the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism, or harbouring fugitives. They are being questioned at a police station in Sussex.
Searches are under way at both the raided addresses. Police said there was no danger to the public in the surrounding area.
Since the arrests on Friday of those suspected of carrying out the failed bombings, police are focusing on finding those who helped plan and finance the attacks, as well as those of 7 July.
But a police spokeswoman earlier played down claims that officers were hunting a third cell poised to strike.
"We are searching for other people in connection with this ongoing inquiry. We have never spoken about a third cell.
"There were quite a few other people involved in the incidents of the 7th and the 21st. It's extremely likely there will be other people involved in harbouring, financing and making the devices."
Police have also been allowed extra time to question Yasin Hassan Omar, the man suspected to trying to blow up a train between Oxford Circus and Warren Street.
He can be questioned until Wednesday. He was arrested in Birmingham on 27 July.
Officers can hold suspects for a maximum of 14 days under the anti-terror laws, before applying for an extension.
In other recent developments:
Italian police arrest a brother of Osman Hussain, named as Fati Isaac, in Brescia, in northern Italy on Sunday, news agency ANSA said. Another brother, Remzi Isaac, was held on Friday
Osman Hussain appeared before an extradition hearing in Rome on Saturday. His court-appointed lawyer Antonietta Sonnessa suggested he would fight being returned to the UK
Yasin Hassan Omar, Muktar Said Ibrahim and Ramzi Mohammed, the other men suspected of carrying out the attempted attacks on 21 July, are being questioned in London
A fifth suspect named as a brother of Ramzi Mohammed, also arrested during Friday's raids, is also being questioned. Police forensic teams are still searching the two addresses raided
Teams are also studying items seized from other addresses in London and Birmingham
No Buddhists, Hindus, Shintus, Christians or Jews arrested so far.
That's because they're just laying low and trying to blend in with the Pakistanis, North Africans, and Arabs who are above suspicion and should not be singled out. Islam has nothing to do with terrorism you know.
Islam has nothing to with the Jihadist Johnny Mohammeds blowing themselves up and scores of innocents.
Those acts of terrorism are GW's and the Jooos's fault.
It must be so. The Muslims keep telling us that. And we all know they wouldn't lie to us because they're TROP.
What? No pro-life, Christian, middle aged white guys driving white vans?
OOPS! I omitted Pro Lifers driving white vans as potential terrorists. Can we say terrorists, these days?
Good street cops and good intel can mean success.
Good street cops and good intel with PC police chiefs like Moose, PC Mayors and PC DA's often result in nothing being done.
That's the real SUN front page??
Disturbing the peace is fairly serious, but terrorism is at least felonious.
Arrest a few anyway..
it's only fair.
Apparently so. I borrowed it yesterday.
Like arrest one for every 5 Jihadist Terrorist arrested.
Mayor Bloombergie would approve of that PC tactic.
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