DUESSELDORF, Germany (AFP) – Three Jordanians and an Algerian linked to Al-Qaeda”s frontman in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, were sentenced to jail terms of five to eight years for planning attacks against Jewish interests in Germany.
The three Jordanians of Palestinian origin were handed sentences of between six and eight years on Wednesday by the court in the western city of Duesseldorf, while the Algerian was sentenced to five years in jail.
The prosecution described the defendants, aged between 32 and 41, as the "most important members" of the German cell of the Islamic group Al-Tawhid whose overall commander is said to be al-Zarqawi.
They were accused of planning to set off a bomb near the headquarters of the Jewish community in Berlin and of plotting hand grenade attacks against restaurants in Duesseldorf owned and frequented by Jews.
The men were detained in April 2002 after police carried out a phone-tapping operation, and went on trial in February last year.
The Jordanians — Mohammed Abu Dhees, Ismail Shalabi, and Ashraf Al Dagma — were convicted of belonging to a terrorist organization.
The Algerian, Djamel Moustfa, was found guilty of supporting a terrorist group.
Another Jordanian, Shadi Abdallah, was sentenced in November 2003 to four years in prison. He testified against the defendants during the latter trial.