Skip to comments.The French connection (Willie Brigitte)
Posted on 02/07/2004 7:06:56 PM PST by Piefloater
It's the story John Howard can't ignore. Sunday will reveal how French suspect Willie Brigitte was sent to Australia by a Pakistani terrorist organisation and was considering which military targets the group would attack. Sunday's Sarah Ferguson spent a month in Paris, piecing together Brigitte's five months in Australia, with the help of French intelligence. Under interrogation, Brigitte admitted to the French he was trained in weapons, explosives and high-altitude endurance by the terrorist group, Lashkar-e-Toiba. Sunday has identified Brigitte's key contact in Australia, a man also believed to be a member of the Pakistani terrorist organisation. And Sunday will also reveal the French authorities warned ASIO that Brigitte might be a terrorist, and our intelligence organisation ignored the warning for four days ...
SARAH FERGUSON: Early in the morning of Wednesday, May 16 last year, a man arrived at Sydney airport after the final leg of his long trip from Paris. He was travelling under his own name, with a new passport, that made no mention of his trips to Pakistan. Some of his associates in France were in prison on terrorism charges. But Willie Brigitte had so far escaped attention.
JEAN FRANCOIS CLAIR, DEPUTY DIRECTOR, FRENCH COUNTER INTELLIGENCE: At this time, Brigitte was completely unknown to us, you know, completely unknown as Brigitte.
SARAH FERGUSON: He came here to Sydney's western suburbs. For a suspected terrorist, his resources were meagre. He carried with him only $2000, a tourist visa and a one-way ticket. Brigitte disappeared into his new life here in Lakemba. ASIO admits that if it weren't for the French investigation, he'd still be here, a chilling thought when you consider the French authorities believe he was no more than a month away from an attack.
(Excerpt) Read more at sunday.ninemsn.com.au ...
Click on link for full transcript.
Bit of a long read, certainly not as good as watching the story on the Crystal Bucket.
Very frightening both from the point of view of Brigitte's activities in Australia and the way the situation was handled by ASIO (Aussie CIA equivalent).
Thanks for the post and ping.
I wonder: is this mosque still open for business in training/recruiting terrorists ? ...
SARAH FERGUSON: The centre of their activities was the Omar mosque in the Muslim quarter of Paris's Belleville district. Filming here is difficult. Outsiders are not welcome since numerous arrests were made of alleged terrorists from the mosque.
MOHAMMED SIFAOUI (TRANSLATION): The facts, I think, of a Frenchman from Guadalupe converted to their cause was, of course, very useful for them, so Brigitte went to this mosque, followed their courses, tried to learn their ideology by heart and then realised he could do much more than that.
SARAH FERGUSON: Under the French system, the man jointly responsible for the investigation of Willie Brigitte is the powerful judge, Jean Louis Bruguier. Until now, he has refused all interviews. His office at the Palace of Justice is off-limits, so he's asked to meet me here in the lobby of one of Paris's grandest hotels. Forbidden by law to discuss the details of the Brigitte case, he can talk about the immediate threat posed by these small groups of Islamic radicals.
JEAN LOUIS BRUGUIER, ANTI-TERRORIST JUDGE: We have a very important and loose conglomerations of Islamic radicals, who are, very, very radical, who are willing to carry out operations and who are moving very quickly from one country to the other. And after September 11, this evolution is growing, more difficult, more scattered, more radical, more globalised.
SARAH FERGUSON: Brigitte was selected from his group as a particularly promising recruit. Here in the forest of Fontainebleau, 50 kilometres south of Paris, Brigitte joins small groups from the mosque in a form of concentrated religious and physical training.
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