French hold al Qaeda link suspect
PARIS, France (CNN) -- A Franco-Algerian man was arrested this week for investigation of alleged ties with the al Qaeda terror network, a French law enforcement official said on Saturday.
The man, whose identity is being withheld for security reasons, was arrested on Tuesday, according to a source with the Directorate of Territorial Security, the French equivalent of the FBI.
The suspect was charged with "criminal association in connection with a terrorist enterprise" four days after his arrest, which was kept secret for "the needs of the investigation," the source said.
The source described the suspect as an "important Islamist figure with mid-level responsibilities." He said several documents and phone books were seized at the time of the arrest, but did not characterise what kind of information the material carried.
At least one French judge traveled to the United States earlier this week to discuss the man's case with U.S. authorities.
The man is believed to have been in contact with Zacarias Moussaoui, the French national of Moroccan descent who has been charged in connection with the September 11 attacks in the United States.
U.S. officials believe Moussaoui, who was detained in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on immigration charges a month before the attacks, was to be one of the September 11 hijackers.
Moussaoui, a French national of Moroccan descent, is scheduled to go on trial on October 14 at the U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Virginia. He was indicted in December on six terror conspiracy counts.
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