A wealthy Syrian arms dealer previously accused of arming militants from Iraq to Somalia has been arrested in Spain on charges he plotted to supply millions of dollars worth of weapons to Colombian rebels, U.S. officials said Friday.
As I have written about this in my Spanish blog, the man in fact is the Syrian Monser Al-Kassar (left,back in 1995):
The weapons dealer has been reclaimed by the South Disctrict Federal Court of N.Y. charged with several crimes, among them conspiracy to give help and material means to a terrorist organization, conspiracy to kill US citizens, conspiracy to kill US officials, conspiracy to use and to buy anti-aircraft missiles and money laundering.
[…] Al Kassar was accused by Judge Baltasar Garzón because of his alleged collaboration in the kidnapping of the Italian ship ‘Achille Lauro’, back in 1985. In 1992 Garzón accused Al Kassar of belonging to the Islamist terrorist group Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, murder in first grade, belonging to armed band and terrorist organization, frustrated murder, illegal detention and piracy.
After he was detained in Madrid on 1992, the Syrian millionaire was held in prison for 14 months, being later free on a bail of €12 million. The National Court considered him not guilty because the instruction made up by Garzón, there weren’t enough proofs to condemn him –something not unusual, by the way-.
Al Kassar was sending weapons to FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia).