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Homeland Security

Wrongly arrested al-Qaeda suspect starts legal action against US


London, Sept 16, IRNA - An Algerian pilot, wrongly accused of trainin 
hijackers to carry out the September 11 attacks in the US, has started
legal proceedings against the American Justice Department and the FBI.
Lofti Raissi, who spent five months in London`s top security 
Belmarsh prison, is also preparing cases against the British police 
and the UK`s Crown Prosecution Service, according to his lawyers. 
The 29-year old pilot was the first person to be accused of the 
September 11 attacks, but an extradition request from the US was 
rejected by a British court due to a lack of evidence. 
His US attorneys were said to be claiming Dlrs 10 million each in 
compensation against the FBI and Justice Department as well as 
demanding a public apology for the charges made against him. 
The US claimed Raissi had personally trained four of the 
hijackers, including Mohammad Atta and that he was the key suspect 
in what was described as the biggest investigation in history. 
While in Belmarsh prison, he complained that he had been 
subjected to physical and verbal attacks. He has also criticised the 
media for the way it reported his arrest, including one daily that 
published his photograph under the headline "Terror instructor." 
Throughout his ordeal, the pilot insisted that he was being made 
a scapegoat because he was Muslim and a pilot. He was said to be 
receiving treatment from a psychiatrist without any hope of being 
employed by any airline. 

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