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Last Updated: Wednesday, 9 May 2007, 15:41 GMT 16:41 UK
UK Guantanamo man 'to face trial'
Ahmed Errachidi
Mr Errachidi worked as a chef in London
A former UK resident freed without charge from Guantanamo Bay after five years is facing charges in his home country, his British lawyer has said.

Ahmed Errachidi was cleared by the US of any wrongdoing, but has now been accused by Moroccan authorities of "membership of an unauthorised group".

His lawyer, Clive Stafford Smith, said the new charge was "horrifying" and a "sop" to the US government.

The Moroccan Embassy in London would say only that it was a judicial matter.

Mr Errachidi, formerly a chef in London, was detained in Pakistan in 2002 for allegedly attending an Afghan al-Qaeda training camp the previous year.

But legal and human rights organisation Reprieve produced evidence to prove Mr Errachidi had been working in a hotel in Mayfair at the time.

Ahmed has suffered five unjustified years of imprisonment in Guantanamo's inhuman conditions
Clive Stafford Smith
Ahmed Errachidi's lawyer

He was eventually released from Guantanamo and returned to Morocco at the end of April.

Once there, he was arrested on terrorism charges and brought before a court on 2 May.

The charges were dropped after representations by local lawyers and Mr Errachidi was allowed to return home to his family.

But Mr Stafford Smith says the Moroccan Interior Minister has now announced that Mr Errachidi will face new charges in a trial expected in July.

'No grounds'

Mr Stafford Smith, who is legal director of Reprieve, said: "This is a horrifying turn of events.

"Ahmed has suffered five unjustified years of imprisonment in Guantanamo's inhuman conditions, but has now been officially cleared by the Americans, confirming that he poses no security threat.

"There are absolutely no grounds for his arrest in Morocco.

"This is purely a sop to the US - part of some silent agreement. Every person returned to Morocco from Guantanamo has faced trial for something."

Mr Stafford Smith is calling for the British government to intervene on his client's behalf.

A spokesman for the Foreign Office said as far as it was aware Mr Errachidi was a free man.

"He was brought up on terrorism charges by the Moroccan authorities. They put him in court and he was later released," he said.

Mr Errachidi came to Britain in 1985 and was later given indefinite leave to remain.


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