Friday, May 04, 2012

Former Cern Nuclear Physicist Jailed for Al-Qaida Terrorist Plot

THE GUARDIAN: Algerian-born Frenchman Adlène Hicheur sentenced to five years for exchanging emails with alleged al-Qaida contact

A French court has sentenced an Algerian-born nuclear physicist to five years in prison for his role in plotting terrorism with al-Qaida's north African affiliate.

Adlène Hicheur, a former researcher at Switzerland's Cern laboratory, was convicted on Friday of "criminal association with a view to plotting terrorist attacks".

Hicheur, who has been in custody since he was arrested in October 2009, could have received up to 10 years in prison.

The 35-year-old scientist and his defenders claim he was a victim of overzealous French anti-terror laws and that he explored ideas on jihadist websites but never took any concrete step toward terrorism.

Speaking after the judgment, Hicheur's lawyer Patrick Baudouin called the verdict "scandalous".

Hicheur has yet decide whether to appeal against the verdict. If he does not, with time off for good behaviour, he "should be out rather quickly", added Baudouin. » | Associated Press in Paris | Friday, May 04, 2012

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