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Swedish court jails two terrorists

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A Swedish court yesterday convicted two men of terror crimes in connection with killings in Syria in 2013, and handed them life sentences.

The Goteborg District court ruled that the men, 32 years old Hassan Mostafa al-Mandlawi and 30 year old Sultan al-Amin were involved in the killings. The men had denied being at the scene.

The court said police found photographic and video evidence on computer memory sticks seized during a search at the Goteborg home of one of the men. It showed two killings, including a beheading, at an industrial area north of Aleppo between April 12 and May 2, 2013.

One of the videos purportedly had footage proving that the men were present at the killings, which were intended to intimidate and frighten people in Syria and abroad, the court said, adding that it shared the prosecutor’s view that they were terrorist crimes.
Chief Prosecutor Agnetha Hilding Qvarnstrom said the pair, who were arrested in July in Sweden, had both “expressed joy over the deeds.”

The men have denied involvement and said they would appeal. A life sentence in Sweden generally means a minimum of 20 to 25 years in prison.

Al-Amin, who has been jailed since July, will begin serving his life sentence immediately. The court also ordered the imprisonment of al-Mandlawi, who had been released after questioning because he used a wheelchair following a gunshot wound to the head.

Al-Mandlawi’s lawyer, Lars Salkola, said he was not satisfied with the verdict especially as he could only discuss it with his client’s relatives because al-Mandlawi is unable to communicate with him because he suffers brain injury.

In line with international practice, Swedish courts may try certain crimes committed abroad if the suspects live or are apprehended in Sweden.


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