Defense Seeks Acquittal in First Sept 11. Trial

Defense lawyers for a Moroccan accused of backing the Sept. 11 attacks demanded his acquittal Wednesday arguing that the trial, the first anywhere of a suspected conspirator, was unfair.

Mounir El Motassadeq is charged with being an accessory to 3,045 murders in New York and Washington and with belonging to the Hamburg-based al Qaeda cell said to have led the assault. He will learn in a week if he will be freed or jailed for up to 15 years. Motassadeq told the court he was shocked by the events of Sept. 11 and said it had been very hard for him to confront relatives of victims who gave the court tearful accounts of their suffering two weeks ago. Full Story

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