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Thursday, 28 September, 2000, 13:58 GMT 14:58 UK
Spy denies $4m Lockerbie offer
Armed police
Security is intense around the courtroom
The Libyan defector giving evidence at the Lockerbie trial has denied being offered $4m if the two men accused of the bombing are convicted.

The US Government has posted a multi-million-dollar reward for information leading to the conviction of those responsible for bombing Pan American Flight 103 in 1988.

Abdul Majid Giaka said: "I haven't had any promises to receive any sum. This is all rubbish, I regret to say."

He was responding under cross-examination by defence lawyer Richard Keen, who asked what he might do with the money.

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
Giaka was asked about a famous book
"You know perfectly well that the US authorities have offered $4m. I can show you the 'wanted' poster if you wish," Mr Keen said.

"I have had no promises whatsoever at all, not once," Giaka responded, speaking in Arabic with simultaneous English translation.

"You can ask the American Government - and I don't think the American Government will tell any lies concerning this question."

Security around the courtroom remains tight as the witness gives evidence from behind a screen with his voice distorted.

He has been brought under guard from America, where he lives under in disguise under a federal protection programme.

The court has heard he does not work but is paid a sum of money by the US Government after becoming a CIA informer.

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, 1988, 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 is taking place in a Scottish courtroom at Camp Zeist, in the Netherlands
The case is being heard by three Scottish judges

Giaka was asked if he had read the short story about Walter Mitty, the hen-pecked fantasist.

Mr Keen said: "While you have been in America have you managed to dip into any of the gems of American literature, like the short story writer James Thurber?"

The witness replied: "I've read some books but not all authors."

Mr Keen: "Have you encountered someone called Mitty, first name Walter?" Giaka: "I do not recall."

He was also asked about his involvement in black market currency deals and insisted he had never taken part in black market trading.

But Mr Keen referred to a CIA telegram which described Giaka as admitting such activities.

Swedish raid

After he finished giving evidence, the court heard from FBI special agent Harold Hendershot, who accompanied police on a raid at a house in Sweden occupied by a convicted Palestinian terrorist.

Mr Hendershot was asked about the raid, which took place a year after the bombing, on the house Mohamed Abu Talb had lived.

He i one of nine individuals blamed by the defence.

At the time, Abu Talb was in jail in Sweden, convicted of three bombing offences in Scandinavia.

He is expected to give evidence later in the trial.

The trial continues.

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See also:

26 Sep 00 | World
Spy 'saw' Lockerbie suspects
21 Sep 00 | World
Spy's court date finalised
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