A look at the suspects in the Paris terror investigation
21 January 2015, 18:31
Paris - A French anti-terror judge has charged the first suspects in connection with the Jan. 7-9 Paris terror attacks in which brothers Said and Cherif Kouachi and their friend Amedy Coulibaly slaughtered 17 people before being killed by police. Here is a summary of what is known about these four suspects and others wanted in connection with France's bloodiest terror attacks in decades.
The four suspects charged Wednesday were: Willy P., Christophe R., Tonino G. and Mickael A. The first three were charged with procuring weapons, a car and other gear for Coulibaly, who killed a policewoman and four hostages at a kosher grocery. Mickael A., was charged with possession and transport of a weapon in connection with a terrorist operation. Prosecutors say some of his DNA turned up on a revolver found in Coulibaly's apartment and on one of the gloves he wore during the attack. They say Mikael A. met Coulibaly in prison between November 2011 and May 2013. All suspects except Tonino G. have criminal records, including mainly driving without a license and aggravated robbery.
Phone records indicate Coulibaly was in regular contact with the suspects, including 18 telephone contacts between him and Mickael A. the day before the attacks began. Records of the positions of their cell phones also indicate Coulibaly and Mickael A. were together for six hours on Jan. 5, two days before the attacks began.
Extradition proceedings are underway for another Frenchman wanted in connection with the attacks. Fritz-Joly Joachin, 29, was arrested Jan. 1 on an unrelated warrant while trying to cross the Bulgarian border into Turkey. French police say he was an associate of the Kouachi brothers, who killed 12 people in an attack against the satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo. He's accused of participating in an organized crime group with terrorist aim, as well as having links to a network organizing the transfer of volunteers to fight with extremists in Syria.
ON THE LOOSE
French police are cooperating with counterparts in Turkey, Spain and Belgium in the hunt for other possible accessories and to determine how the gunmen procured their weapons. Coulibaly's common-law wife Hayat Boumeddiene is believed to have gone to Syria shortly before the attack. Police said Wednesday that she and Coulibaly were briefly stopped in a routine traffic stop in Paris on Dec. 30. The next day the pair drove to Madrid, where Boumeddiene caught a flight to Turkey. Spain's National Court is investigating what Coulibaly did in the Spanish capital with Boumeddiene and a third person who was not identified, but is suspected of helping Boumeddiene get from Turkey to Syria.
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