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Last Updated: Wednesday, 11 February, 2004, 22:59 GMT
Bin Laden's driver in Guantanamo
Osama Bin Laden
Bin Laden was driven around in a pick-up truck
Osama Bin Laden's chauffeur is being held at the US military prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, his lawyer has said.

Navy Lt Cdr Charles Swift said Salim Ahmed Hamdan was taken into custody about two years ago.

Mr Hamdan has not been charged with any crime and denies he was a member of Afghanistan's former Taleban regime or Bin Laden's al-Qaeda network.

The 34-year-old Yemeni is one of four detainees chosen to stand trial at possible military tribunals.

Lt Cdr Swift said Mr Hamdan had worked for Bin Laden on the al-Qaeda leader's farm in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar since 1997.

He said his client earned $200 a month driving Bin Laden around in a Toyota pick-up truck and was not a terrorist.

"He has a wife. He has two young children, one of whom he's never seen. The only reason why he took the job as a driver was to support his family," said Lt Cdr Swift.

Mr Hamdan was captured by Afghan forces during the US war in Afghanistan, and turned over to US forces.

He is the first among more than 600 detainees held at Guantanamo Bay to be publicly linked to Bin Laden.

Lt Cdr Swift said his client could be charged with conspiracy or being an accessory to a crime.


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