December 12, 2016 / 4:40 PM / 3 years ago

British men jailed for funding Brussels bomb suspect

LONDON (Reuters) - Two Britons were jailed on Monday for funding terrorism by handing cash to Brussels bombing suspect Mohamed Abrini, “the man in the hat”.

Abrini, 31, was arrested in Belgium in April in connection with a suicide bombing at Brussels’ Zaventem Airport and a blast at a metro station in which 32 people died.

Abrini has been charged with being part of a terrorist organisation and is awaiting trial.

Zakaria Boufassil, 26, was found guilty by a jury which heard that he and another man arranged a meeting with Abrini in a park in Small Heath, Birmingham, eight months before the Brussels attacks. Mohammed Ali Ahmed pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing.

On Monday Boufassil was sentenced to three years in jail and Ahmed received eight years, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said.

Ahmed withdrew 3,000 pounds from an account set up by a third man and the pair handed over the cash to Abrini, the CPS said.

Abrini became known as the man in the hat from CCTV pictures of him pushing a trolley through Brussels airport before the blast.

Reporting by Costas Pitas and Jan Strupczewski; editing by Andrew Roche

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