2 men who gave cash to Brussels suspect sentenced in Britain

AP News
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Posted: Dec 12, 2016 11:39 AM
2 men who gave cash to Brussels suspect sentenced in Britain

LONDON (AP) — Two men who provided cash to a key suspect in the deadly Paris and Brussels bombings received prison sentences in Britain on Monday.

A judge sentenced Mohammed Ali Ahmed to eight years in prison and Zakaria Boufassil to three years.

Boufassil, 26, was found guilty last week. Ahmed, 27, had confessed.

They gave 3,000 pounds ($3,700) to bombing suspect Mohamed Abrini at a meeting in Birmingham, England, in July 2015.

Abrini is the "man in the hat" seen on video footage shortly before the March 22 bombings at the Brussels airport that killed 16 people. He also is a suspect in the Paris attacks that claimed 130 victims in November 2015. He is in custody in Belgium.

In a statement, prosecutors said the two men knew the money would be used to fund "international terrorism." The statement says Ahmed withdrew the money from a bank account set up by a third man who is believed to have joined Islamic State fighters in Syria.

"You do not need to leave the country to be prosecuted for preparing terrorist acts or assisting others to do so," prosecutor Sue Hemming said. "Offenses can be committed in your bank, your place of work, even in your own home."