The government yesterday expelled a former presumed bin Ladin bodyguard who had been living in Germany with his family since 1997.
Sami A, a 42-year-old Tunisian, was sent back to his country and handed over to the authorities. He had been arrested at the end of June for extradition.
“I can confirm that Sami A was repatriated to Tunisia this morning and handed over to the Tunisian authorities,” Interior Ministry spokeswoman Annegret Korff was quoted by the AFP news agency as saying.
“He was arrested just when he arrived in Tunis,” said his side Sofiene Sliti, spokesman for the Tunisian anti-terrorist pole.
According to the testimony of a German anti-terrorist trial in 2005, Sami A had served several months in 2000 as one of bin Laden’s bodyguards in Afghanistan. He had denied these claims and refuted to have been the bodyguard of Osama Bin Laden, claiming to have had religious training in Pakistan during this period.
Bin Laden led the jihadist al Qaeda network. He was the mastermind behind the devastating terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. He was shot down by US special forces in Pakistan in 2011.
At least three of the suicide bombers of the September 11 attacks were members of an Al Qaeda group based in Hamburg, northern Germany.
Sami A had been investigated for alleged links to Al Qaeda in 2006, but was not charged.
He had obtained a temporary residence permit in Germany in 1999 and attended several technology courses.
Sami A was considered a security risk when he lived in the city of Bochum, in the west of the country, where he received 1,022 pounds a month on welfare. His asylum application was rejected in 2007.