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Monday, 17 July, 2000, 21:04 GMT 22:04 UK
Lockerbie accused 'worked at airport'
Accused
The trial of the accused is under Scottish law
Witnesses have told the Lockerbie trial that one of the Libyan's accused of the bombing handled baggage and tags at a Maltese airport.

It has been claimed by the prosecution team that Luqua Airport in Malta was the one used to load the explosives which blew up Pan Am 103 over the Scottish town of Lockerbie.

Travel agent, Dennis Burke, told the special hearing at Camp Zeist in the Netherlands that Al Amin Khalifa Fhimah worked for Libyan Arab Airlines (LAA) at the Malta airport at the time of the 1988 atrocity.

Trial details
The two accused are Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi, 48, and Al Amin Khalifa Fhimah, 44
Pan Am Flight 103 exploded over Lockerbie on 21 December, 1998, killing all 259 people on board and another 11 on the ground
The two men deny three charges - murder, conspiracy to murder and a breach of the 1982 Aviation Security Act
The trial, in Camp Zeist, in the Netherlands, is expected to last a year
About 1,000 witnesses are expected to be called
The case is being heard by three Scottish judges
He said because LAA flights were often overbooked, the allocation of spare seats was made by Mr Fhimah.

Mr Burke added: "There were times when it was quite chaotic. It was very busy with a lot of luggage around. Sometimes it was literally a fight to get a boarding pass."

Mr Fhimah was also identified in court on Monday by another travel worker at the airport.

The prosecution said Nicholas Ciarlo had made a statement to police in which he said he had seen the accused filling out baggage tags at the airport by hand.

Defence lawyers said security at Luqa was very tight and the chances of smuggling a bomb was "extremely remote".

They are expected to blame Palestinians in Frankfurt for the attack, which killed all 259 passengers and 11 people on the ground.

The case continues.

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See also:

14 Jul 00 | World
Trial told of security weakness
11 Jul 00 | World
'Malta link' in Lockerbie chain
29 Jun 00 | World
Libyans' passports examined
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